mandamus

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Related to Mandamus petition: writ of mandamus

mandamus

In the nature of an appeal, mandamus is a command from a court ordering a government authority, or a lower court official, to do some act that is within their power to do and they are supposed to do without exercising any discretion. One would appeal a decision to deny a building permit for construction with minor or inconsequential variances from code requirements. However,
one would seek mandamus if the permitting office acknowledged that all requirements had been met, but still refused to issue the permit. The decision of proper remedy—mandamus or appeal—is highly technical,and the wrong choice could result in the loss of all rights to reverse a decision.

References in periodicals archive ?
By filing mandamus petitions rather than an appeal, The Supreme Court is forced to deal with Windsor's allegations of corruption in the federal courts.