«Abuse of discretion Merriam-Webster.com Legal Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, www.merriam-webster.com/legal/abuse%20of%20discretion. Retrieved 28 September 2022. The misappropriation standard is used by courts of appeal to review decisions of lower courts in criminal and civil law when a subordinate court makes a discretionary decision. When an appellate party challenges the judgment, the Court of Appeal uses the standard of misuse of authority to review the judgment. The norm of misuse of authority is also found in administrative law. 5 Section 706(2)(a) of the United States Code states that if a court reviews the decision of an administrative authority, the decision will be set aside if the decision was «arbitrary, capricious, abusive of its discretion, or otherwise not in accordance with the law.» In der Rechtssache McLane Co., Inc. v. E.E.O.C., 581 U.S. (2017), the Supreme Court ruled that the review of misuse of powers extends to an administrative court`s decision to issue a subpoena.
n. a polite way of saying that a trial judge made such a serious error during a trial or in ruling on an application that a person did not receive a fair trial («clearly against reason and evidence» or against applicable law). A court of appeal will use the finding of this abuse as grounds for setting aside the judgment of the court of first instance. Examples of «abuse of judgment» or errors made by judges include not allowing a key witness to testify, inappropriate comments that could influence a jury, bias, or making decisions based on evidence that deprive a person of the opportunity to give their version of the case. This does not mean that a trial or the judge has to be perfect, but it does mean that the judge`s actions were so far from the limits that someone really did not get a fair trial. Sometimes appellate courts admit that the judge was wrong, but not wrong enough to influence the outcome of the trial, often much to the chagrin of the losing party. In criminal cases, abuse of power may include judgments that are grossly too harsh. In a divorce action, it is the granting of alimony that goes well beyond the established formula or the realistic solvency of the spouse or life partner. However, an appeals court would find that a trial court has abused its discretion if it allows a photo as evidence without proof of its authenticity. Apter v. Ross, 781 N.E.2d 744 (Ind.App.
2003). The authenticity of a photo can be established by a witness` personal observations that the photo represents exactly what it claims to represent at the time the photo was taken. Usually, the photographer who took the photo is best placed to give such a testimony. In General Electric Co. v. Joiner, 522 U.S. 136 (1997), the Supreme Court held that the abuse of power standard is the correct standard for reviewing evidentiary decisions, including the authorization or exclusion of expert testimony. If the standard is applied, the lower court`s decision will be overturned only if the trial judge has committed a manifest error, exercised discretion that is not justified by the evidence, or rendered a judgment manifestly contrary to the facts. A misuse of powers may also exist if the lower court bases its decision on a manifestly erroneous finding of fact, makes an irrational decision or commits a manifest error of law. For example, in a negligence case, a state appeals court ruled that the trial court did not abuse its discretion by allowing a photo of the scene of an accident as evidence, even if the photo showed a model pedestrian walking blindly in the path of the driver`s vehicle and pointing the head of the pedestrian straight ahead, as if she was completely ignoring the vehicle and other vehicles. Gorman vs. Hunt, SW 19.3d 662 (Ky.
2000). In upholding the Trial Court`s decision to admit the evidence, the Court of Appeal concluded that the photograph was only used to show the pedestrian`s position relative to the vehicle at the time of impact and not to hold the pedestrian responsible for his negligence. The Court of Appeal also found that counsel who objected to the admissibility of the photograph was free to remind the jury of its limited relevance during cross-examination and closing arguments. This question is difficult to answer because discretion is based on individual judgment. And as with most appeals, proving that a legal error has occurred can be an uphill battle. However, the court does not have to prove that they were correct or just in their judgment. Instead, all you have to do is find that they have abused their discretion. When a case is brought before the courts, the court has some flexibility in how it decides certain issues.