Sealed Verdict Law & Legal Definition


A sealed verdict is a verdict that's put in a sealed envelope when there is a delay in announcing the result, such as waiting for the judge, the parties and the attorneys to come back to court. The verdict is kept in a sealed envelope until court reconvenes and then handed to the judge.

The following is an example of a jury instruction regarding a sealed verdict:

"You will be given a plain envelope. After you have arrived at a verdict, the Jury Leader will complete and sign a formal verdict, using the appropriate form accompanying these instructions. Then, the Jury Leader, in your presence, will insert the completed and signed verdict, as well as all other verdict forms furnished, into the envelope and seal it securely. After this has been done, the Jury Leader will notify the bailiffs that you have arrived at a verdict and deliver the sealed envelope to the bailiff, at which time you may separate. The bailiff will safely keep the sealed envelope and all other documents and exhibits submitted by you.

After separating, you will then report to the courtroom on _______________,at _.m., at which time the sealed envelope will be opened and the verdict received by the Court. You must not disclose this verdict to anyone, or discuss it or the case with anyone, until it has been received in open court."