What does inactive docket mean?

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What does inactive docket mean?

Asked on January 25, 2013 under Criminal Law, New Jersey

Answers:

B.H.F., Member, Texas State Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

The term "inactive docket" can refer to a couple of different things-- depending on your jurisdiction.  Generally, it refers to a set of cases where there has been no movement on the case.

Some courts call this same docket a "status docket".  The purpose of the docket is to look at the case on a periodic basis to see if there are any changes in status that could affect the activity on the case.  Generally, a criminal case will appear on the inactive docket because a defendant has not yet been arrested or rearrested if they have jumped bail.  During the docket setting, the prosecutor will update the court on the progress being made to find the defendant and get the case moving again. 

Even though "inactive docket" usually refers to a set of cases which are stalled for various reasons, some jurisdictions will also use it to refer to case that have been held up because of a diversion program.  For example, some judges and prosecutors will agree to suspend activity on the criminal case if a defendant agrees to enter a proactive rehab program.  While the defendant is completing the program, his case will be inactive.  Usually is will only be activated if he fails to comply with the requirements of the diversion program. 

As mentioned, the first part of the answer is the most frequent use of the term.  To know exactly the purpose of the inactive docket in your jurisdiction, simply call the clerk of the court and they can tell you how the term is used in your jurisdiction.


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