PERSONAL INJURY LEGAL GLOSSARY
Glossary of Personal Injury Law Terms
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Habeas Corpus: A writ commanding that a person be brought
before a judge. Most commonly, a writ of habeas corpus is a legal
document that forces law enforcement authorities to produce a
prisoner they are holding and to legally justify his or her
Harmless Error: An error committed during a trial that was
corrected or was not serious enough to affect the outcome of a trial
and therefore was not sufficiently harmful (prejudicial) to be
reversed on appeal.
Health Maintenance Organization (HMO): A type of managed
health care system that contracts with medical facilities,
physicians, employers, and sometimes individuals to provide medical
care to a group of people known as "members." Generally, members of
HMOs don't have any significant "out-of-pocket" expenses because the
medical care is most often paid for by an employer at a fixed price
Hearing: A proceeding usually without a jury.
Hearsay: Statements by a witness who did not see or hear
the incident in question but heard about it from someone else.
Hearsay is usually not admissible as evidence in court.
Hemorrhagic Stroke: Occurs when an artery in the brain tears
or bursts, causing blood to spill out.
HMO Negligence: Generally, a type of medical malpractice that
can be defined as the carelessness of an HMO, acting through its
physicians, in making treatment decisions for a member that results
in injury to that member.
Homeowner's Insurance: Policy that insures individuals
against any, some, or all of the risks of loss to personal dwellings
or the contents of personal dwellings or the personal liability
pertaining to personal dwellings.
Hostile Witness: A witness whose testimony is not
favorable to the party who calls him or her as a witness. A hostile
witness may be asked leading questions and may be cross-examined by
the party who calls him or her to the stand.
Hung Jury: A jury whose members cannot agree upon a
Hurt on the Job: In order to establish a right to workers'
compensation benefits, there must be an employment relationship
during which an accident or an injury arises in the course of
employment and is related thereto, and includes aggravation,
reactivation, acceleration or death resulting from the injury.