In law, recusal is the act of a judge being disqualified (or disqualifying herself) because of a conflict of interest. A recusal, for example, would replace a judge if the defendant in a case was a relative.

An attorney might ask for recusal if she overhears the judge saying something like, "Well it's obvious he's guilty — just look at those clothes he's wearing!" Before a case is decided, both judge and jury have to be completely unbiased and impartial for the result to be just. Recusal protects against a judge's bias. The word comes from recuse, "reject or challenge as disqualified to act."

Definitions of recusal
  1. noun
    (law) the disqualification of a judge or jury by reason of prejudice or conflict of interest; a judge can be recused by objections of either party or judges can disqualify themselves
    synonyms: recusation
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    type of:
    the act of preventing someone from participating by finding them unqualified
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