Definitions of habeas corpus

  1. In law, derived from the Great Charter, so caleld from containing these words, and which secures the liberty of the subject, or his person from illegal restraint; a writ or document which orders the body of a person confined in prison, opr otherwise in restraint, to be produced.
  2. a writ ordering a prisoner to be brought before a judge
  3. right to obtain a writ of habeas corpus as protection against illegal imprisonment
  4. the civil right to obtain a writ of habeas corpus as protection against illegal imprisonment
  5. Latin for " You have the body." A prisoner files a petition for writ of habeas corpus in order to challenge the authority of the prison or jail warden to continue to hold him. If the judge orders a hearing after reading the writ, the prisoner gets to argue that his confinement is illegal. These writs are frequently filed by convicted prisoners who challenge their conviction on the grounds that the trial attorney failed to prepare the defense and was incompetent. Prisoners sentenced to death also file habeas petitions challenging the constitutionality of the state death penalty law. Habeas writs are different from and do not replace appeals, which are arguments for reversal of a conviction based on claims that the judge conducted the trial improperly. Often, convicted prisoners file both.
  6. A writ to a jailer to produce the body of one detained in prison and to state the reasons of such detention, that the court may judge of their sufficiency.
  7. Writ directing any one detaining another, to produce the prisoner in court.
  8. A writ requiring a person in custody to be brought before a court.
  9. A writ to deliver one from prison, and show reason for his detention, with a view to judge of its justice.