Ellipsis in Legal Spanish: What do you mean by elevar a definitivas??

Ellipsis in Legal Spanish

In Spanish felony proceedings (procedimiento penal ordinario), elevar a definitivas has a peculiar meaning, referring to the ratification of the prosecution’s initial accusation or the defense’s initial defense (collectively called calificaciones provisionales). At the end of a criminal trial and after evidence has been examined, the attorneys for the prosecution and defense may either amend their initial pleadings in written closing arguments called conclusiones based on the events that transpired at trial, or they may “ratify their initial accusatory and defensive pleadings” (elevar a definitivas las calificaciones de fiscal y defensa), which are then known as calificaciones definitivas. Thus, the expression with its ellipted part included is elevar las calificaciones (or) conclusiones provisionales a definitivas. At the conclusion of a criminal trial the prosecuting and defense attorneys may simply say “a definitivas,” indicating that they are “ratifying their initial pleadings.”

It should perhaps be noted that the expression elevar a definitivas can be used in other nonlegal contexts when ratifying or confirming something that was initially considered provisional. For example, in procedures to determine candidates eligible for civil service exams (oposiciones), the authorities conducting the exams issue a resolución elevando a definitivas las listas de aspirantes admitidos en las pruebas. In this case, the final list of candidates eligible to take the exam is confirmed, after determining whether those on the provisional list met the examination requirements.

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