Peremptory Challenge

Definition - What does Peremptory Challenge mean?

A peremptory challenge refers to the standard practice in jury trials where both the plaintiff's attorney and the defendant's attorney can remove a number of potential jurors without giving a reason. The number of jurors that can be removed with this type of challenge is limited. This right is nearly always taken advantage of by the attorneys on both sides of a case.

Justipedia explains Peremptory Challenge

The purpose behind peremptory challenges is to give attorneys an opportunity to remove jurors that the attorneys believe are potentially biased based on a "hunch." This is different than the right that attorneys have to remove potential jurors based on an actual cause or actual bias. For example, if a case had something to do with the color red and a potential juror explains that they heavily favor or dislike the color red and cannot put away their bias during the trial, then an attorney could remove this potential juror for cause. On the other hand, if a juror said that they feel neutral about the color red but one of the attorneys has a "hunch" that this person is lying, then the attorney can use a peremptory challenge to have this potential juror removed.

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