What is a Stay Order?

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What is a Stay Order? Blog Image

Overview:

The Supreme Court recently agreed to review its 2018 judgment on the expiry period of stay orders to expedite trial proceedings.

About Stay Order

  • A ‘stay’ or ‘stay order’ is defined as the act of temporarily stopping or postponing any judicial proceeding through the court or legal authorities in India in order to secure the rights of a citizen.
  • It could lead to the suspension of a case, or even the suspension of any specific proceeding within an ongoing case.
  • So, till a stay order is in action, the operation of the Court’s proceedings is made standstill, and the party who seeks it can cause the operation of the other party (against whom the order is given) to cease.
  • In the case of any key development that may require it, a judge may decide to issue a stay order without even formally prompting the other party or even a request being made to them in this regard.
  • There are two types of stay orders: ‘stay of proceedings’ and ‘stay of execution’.
  • A stay of proceedings is issued by the court in case there are parallel proceedings that take place, which may affect either one. 
  • A stay of execution refers to the complete halting of the enforcement of a verdict or judgement against someone, for example, when it is believed that a person is innocent and is given a pardon. 
  • This means that stay orders can persist conditionally or even absolutely.
  • The Supreme Court on March 28, 2018, passed several directions with regard to stay orders, applicable to both civil and criminal matters, which are as follows:
    • In all pending cases where a stay is granted and is operating, the stay will come to an end on expiry of 6 months from the March 28, 2018, unless, in exceptional cases, a speaking order extends the stay.
    • In cases where stay is granted in the future, i.e, after March 28, 2018, the stay order will expire 6 months from the date of such order, unless an order of extension is granted by a speaking order.
    • The speaking order granting an extension must show that the case was of such exceptional nature that continuing the stay was more important than having the trial finalized.
    • The trial court may fix a date not later than 6 months from the date of the stay order.
    • On the expiration of the period of 6 months, the trial court will resume the proceedings without waiting for any other intimation unless an express order extending the stay is produced.

Q1) What is a trial in court? 

A trial in court is a formal legal proceeding in which the facts of a case are examined, witnesses are heard, and a decision is reached by a judge or jury. Trials are a fundamental component of the judicial system and are used to resolve disputes and determine the guilt or innocence of individuals accused of committing a crime.

Source: Five judge supreme court bench to review ruling on ‘automatic vacation of stay’