A l'appel de la cause


Senior Member
English - United Kingdom
Hi there

Could anyone please help me with the following phrase that I'm having trouble with. It is found in a legal document where a court case is being described:-

"A l'appel de la cause, le président a constaté l'absence de..."

Does it mean something along the lines of:-

"At the beginning of the proceedings, the judge observed the absence of..."

Thanks for any suggestions!
  • Assurancetourix

    Senior Member
    English (UK)
    The UK expression would be "when the case was called on". At the beginning of a hearing, before the judge or the advocates speak, the court clerk will read out the name of the case and possibly some other details... so it is something that happens at the beginning of the proceedings, but at the same time it's more specific than that.
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