juvenile court

a law court having jurisdiction over youths, generally of less than 18 years.
[1895-1900, Amer.]

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Special court handling problems of delinquent, neglected, or abused children.

Two types of cases are processed by a juvenile court: civil matters, often concerning care of an abandoned or impoverished child, and criminal matters, arising from antisocial behaviour by the child. Most statutes provide that all persons under a given age (often 18 years) must first be processed by the juvenile court, which can then, at its discretion, assign the case to an ordinary court. Before the creation of the first juvenile court, in Chicago in 1899, and the subsequent creation of other such courts in the United States and other countries (e.g., Canada in 1908; England in 1908; France in 1912; Russia in 1918; Poland in 1919; Japan in 1922; and Germany in 1923), juveniles were tried in the same courts as adults.

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law
also called  Children's Court,  

      special court handling problems of delinquent, neglected, or abused children. The juvenile court fulfills the government's role as substitute parent, and, where no juvenile court exists, other courts must assume the function.

      Two types of cases are processed by a juvenile court: civil matters, usually concerning care of an abandoned child or one whose parents cannot support him; and criminal matters arising from antisocial behaviour by the child.

      Most statutes provide that all persons under a given age (18 years in many places) must be processed initially by the juvenile court, which can then, at its discretion, assign the case to an ordinary court.

      The idea behind the juvenile court system is that children should be treated with special care. Its originators considered it futile and unjust to punish a child for wrongdoing, preferring rehabilitation instead. To accomplish this, the court operates informally and paternally.

      The first juvenile court was established in 1889 in Chicago, and the movement spread rapidly throughout the world. They are now found in Europe, Latin America, Israel, Iraq, Japan, and other countries, although there is variation in structure and procedures.

      There has been much disagreement, especially in the United States, over whether the juvenile court's informality helps or hurts children. Some argue that, with crowded court calendars and incompetent judges, the court's purpose is thwarted and that the child is stripped of the rights of criminal defendants with no corresponding relaxation in severity of treatment. In response to this, courts in the United States have extended to juveniles such rights as the right to cross-examine witnesses, the right to fair notice of hearings, the privilege against self-incrimination, and the right to legal counsel.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • juvenile court — n: a court that has jurisdiction over juvenile delinquency proceedings or other civil proceedings involving minors or juveniles compare family court Merriam Webster’s Dictionary of Law. Merriam Webster. 1996 …   Law dictionary

  • juvenile court — juvenile courts N VAR A juvenile court is a court which deals with crimes committed by young people who are not yet old enough to be considered as adults …   English dictionary

  • juvenile court — ☆ juvenile court n. a law court for cases involving young persons under a specified age, usually 18 years …   English World dictionary

  • juvenile court — noun count or uncount a government department that is responsible for justice in cases where young people are involved in a crime or legal problem …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • Juvenile court — A juvenile court or young offender court is a court of law having special authority to try and pass judgments for crimes committed by children or adolescents who have not attained the age of majority. In most modern legal systems, crimes… …   Wikipedia

  • Juvenile Court — Filmdaten Originaltitel Juvenile Court Produktionsland USA …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • juvenile court — UK / US noun [countable/uncountable] Word forms juvenile court : singular juvenile court plural juvenile courts a law court that deals with children and teenagers …   English dictionary

  • juvenile court — noun a court having jurisdiction over dependent and delinquent children • Hypernyms: ↑court, ↑tribunal, ↑judicature * * * ˌjuvenile ˈcourt [juvenile court] noun a court that deals with young people who are not yet adults …   Useful english dictionary

  • juvenile court — court of law where minors are tried …   English contemporary dictionary

  • juvenile court — ju′venile court′ n. law a law court having jurisdiction over youths, generally those of less than 18 years • Etymology: 1895–1900, amer …   From formal English to slang

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