It is a situation where a case that is almost completed has to be started afresh. De Novo itself means to start something afresh.

In common law systems, one feature that distinguishes an appellate proceeding from a trial de novo is that new evidence may not ordinarily be presented in an appeal, though there are rare instances when it may be allowed—usually evidence that came to light only after the trial and could not, in all diligence, have been presented in the lower court.

In the United States, some states provide for bench trials only for small claims, traffic offenses, and criminal offenses with a penalty of imprisonment of less than six months, then provide the ability to appeal a loss to the trial court of general jurisdiction for a brand-new trial.


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