What Does Alias Capias Mean?


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Shanesubber Richardson Profile
In legal terms, "Alias Capias” refers to any type of writ issued for a defendant who has failed to respond to previous citations or summons. Once issued, the document is handed out to an officer in charge with arresting the defendant.

The expression is formed from two Latin terms, having two different meanings and, subsequently, two different evolutions in the history of the British Law. "Alias” means "other” and is used contextually. It sometimes implies that the person it refers to tries to hide his or her identity. "Capias”, literally meaning "you are to receive” or "you are in the position to take,” is the short form of "capias ad respondendum.” In various legal situations, Capias is used in the process of arresting a person to the sole purpose of presenting him or her in court.

More often than not, such a document includes a set of instances that are directly involved in the legal process. On such an Alias Capias writ, once can find the plaintiff’s and the officer’s names, the name of the attorney designated to represent the plaintiff, and the clerk. Apart from names, it also includes the date and the location where the defendant must appear (both referred to as "court term”) and the motivation. In some cases, it can include additional information, most of which is strictly contextual, without other legal meanings or repercussions.

The reason of using Alias Capias documents in the legal system is to ensure ethical consistency to the legislative process. If the defendant fails to appear in court, he or she can still be judged in absentia. This means that the defendant has no power over the legislative process and justice can be done anyway. On the other hand, answering to a summons, order, or citation after the court term is futile, because the legal process is generally irrevocable.
Anonymous Profile
Anonymous answered
A "Capias" is a warrant of arrest.  The term "Alias" is added when the warrant is for fail to appear in answer to a summons, citation, or order to appear.
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Anonymous answered
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