Writ of Mandamus

Types of Mandamus

Depending on the circumstances of the matter, a court may order any of three types of mandamus. These include:

  1. Alternative Mandamus – an order often issued when an application for writ of mandamus has been made. The alternative mandamus allows the defendant to either perform the action demanded, or appear before the court to give good reason for not performing it.
  2. Peremptory Mandamus – a categorical command to the defendant to perform the act in question, with no choice or alternative given. The peremptory mandamus is issued when the defendant failed to both perform the act, and to appear before the court as ordered in the alternative mandamus.
  3. Continuing Mandamus – an order issued to a lesser government official, or a lower authority, to perform its duty promptly for an unspecified period of time, in order to prevent a miscarriage of justice.

Legal Requirements for a Petition for Writ of Mandamus

A person requesting a writ of mandamus must be able to show the court that he has a legal right to force the government agency or public servant to perform the specified action, or to refrain from doing a specified act. That duty must be a duty of public nature, and it must be crucial, rather than discretionary. It is unlikely that the court will issue a writ of mandamus if relief can be obtained through other means available to the petitioner, such as an appeal.

Source Writ of Mandamus

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