Alienation Definition and Legal Meaning

On this page, you'll find the legal definition and meaning of Alienation, written in plain English, along with examples of how it is used.

What is Alienation?

v. permission seeked by attorney from the judge to go near to witness box to question the witness or display something to him. Attorneys are not allowed to hover over a witness, even when permission has been granted to approach the witness. They are expected to cross-examine the witness and leave as soon as they are finished, and maintaining a respectable distance from the witness all through the examination. Even when the permission has been granted to approach the witness, if the cross-examination is intended to be intense, adversarial, personal or intimidating in nature, it must be done from the podium; or when the witness is too young the podium is supposed to be used.

History and Meaning of Alienation

Alienation, in legal terms, is the permission sought by an attorney from the judge to approach a witness box to question or display something to the witness. The attorney is expected to maintain distance while conducting the cross-examination and can utilize the podium for intense or adversarial questioning, personal or intimidating in nature, or when the witness is too young. Alienation is an important legal consideration that ensures fair trials without subjecting witnesses to harassment or intimidation by lawyers.

Examples of Alienation

  1. During the trial, the prosecutor requested alienation to question the witness.
  2. The attorney used alienation to show the evidence to the witness.
  3. The court granted the defense attorney's request for alienation so he could approach the witness.

Legal Terms Similar to Alienation

  1. Cross-examination: the questioning of a witness by the party opposed to the one who called the witness.

  2. Witness box: the designated area from where the witness is called to give evidence.

  3. Prosecutor: a legal representative of the state who conducts criminal proceedings.

  4. Defense attorney: an attorney representing the defendant in a criminal case.

  5. Evidence: information or documents presented in a court of law to prove or disprove a fact.