Provisional Courts Law and Legal Definition

Provisional courts are courts established during the Civil War in insurgent territory occupied by national forces, under the authority of the President as Commander in chief of those forces.

The following is an example of a case law referring to provisional courts:

When portions of an insurgent territory are occupied by the National forces it was within the constitutional authority of the President, as commander in chief, to establish therein provisional courts for the hearing and determination of all causes arising under the laws of the state or of the United States. Its establishment by military authority is not a violation of the constitutional provision that the judicial power of the United States shall be vested in one Supreme Court and in such inferior courts as the Congress may from time to time ordain and establish. [Mechanics' & Traders' Bank v. Union Bank, 89 U.S. 276 (U.S. 1875)].