Monday, 30 November 2020

dispositive motion

Language Logs directs us to an interesting and precise bit of legal terminology encountered and highlighted in the court opinion rejecting the Trump campaign’s baseless challenge to the state of Pennsylvania’s election tally: upon information and belief. Identifying a claim or accusation made not from firsthand knowledge or observation but rather via hearsay that the petitioner believes to be true, it is invoked chiefly in dealing with contempt of court and perjury under oath, protecting the maker of the statement from outright lying in the process of bringing frivolous or nuisance cases to trial. The patience of the law has its limits, however.