Recess Definition and Legal Meaning

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

What is Recess?

(n) A ‘recess’ is defined as the time-off or break in the court proceedings, legislative sessions etc to a latter date and time. A recess is sought when a future event need to be settled or happened.

History and Meaning of Recess

The term "recess" comes from the Latin word "recessus," which means "a withdrawing, a going back, a retreat." In the legal context, it refers to the temporary suspension of court or legislative proceedings, usually for a designated period of time. During a recess, the parties involved in the proceedings are free to engage in other activities, such as negotiations or consultations, until the recess ends and proceedings resume.

Examples of Recess

Here are some examples of how the term "recess" might be used in various legal contexts:

  1. The judge called for a recess so that the attorneys could confer and try to reach a settlement.
  2. After weeks of contentious hearings, Congress went into recess, leaving many important bills unresolved until their return.
  3. The Supreme Court always takes a recess during the summer months, giving the justices time to review cases and prepare for the next term.

Legal Terms Similar to Recess

Here are some related legal terms that are similar to "recess":

  • Adjournment: a formal end to a meeting or session, often with a plan to reconvene at a later time.
  • Continuance: a postponement of a court hearing or trial to a later date.
  • Stay: a judicial order halting or suspending legal proceedings until a certain condition is met.
  • Recess Appointment: an appointment made by the President of the United States to fill a vacancy in government during a recess of the Senate.