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Definition of Procedural Due Process

Procedural due process are the rights a person has, as defined by the U.S. Constitution in the Fifth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution (and the Fourteenth Amendment), in which it is repeated, which states that "no person may be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law."

Due process can include substantive due process, which are the rights afforded to you as a person, but more frequently we think of procedural due process as the process which determines how a legal proceeding against you must be carried out. For instance, a person has the right to an attorney, the right to appointed counsel if they cannot hire their own attorney, the right to compel witnesses to appear at trial, the right to confront prosecution witnesses at trial, and the right to obtain a transcript of trial proceedings.

These rights apply to civil and criminal trials at the state and federal level. The U.S. Supreme Court has also ruled that immigrants, enemy combatants, some detainees and prisons of war may also have the right to notice and to a hearing. Civil and criminal lawyers can outline your rights to you if you have questions.

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