A bench trial is where a judge, not a jury, decides the verdict in a Georgia court case.
The overall process of a bench trial, however, is similar to that of a jury trial. All evidence is presented to the judge to prove whether or not the defendant is guilty beyond a reasonable doubt of committing the crimes in which he or she is charged with, and motions can be filed. Most bench trials are oftentimes a little less formal than jury trials since less people are involved.
Bench Trials vs. Jury Trials
Most state trials are bench trials, unless a jury trial is requested. On the other hand, most criminal trials are jury trials unless a bench trial is requested. There’s no set standard for which trial is preferrable, as there are pros and cons to both processes.