Nolo's Plain-English Law Dictionary
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- A trial that ends prematurely and without a judgment, due either to a mistake that jeopardizes a right to a fair trial or to a jury that can't agree on a verdict (a "hung jury"). If a judge declares a mistrial in a civil case, he or she will direct that the case be set for a new trial at a future date. Mistrials in criminal cases can result in a retrial, a plea bargain, or a dismissal of the charges.