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Mandamus is an order from a court to a lower court or a government agency for certain action to be taken as it is supposed to be.
For example, a mandamus might come to light should a property transaction be conducted to all requirements of the law but the government authority refuse to endorse it or causes unreasonably prolonged delay in rubber stamping it.
A mandamus should not be confused with an appeal.
An example of an appeal would be a building found not to comply with safety codes but owner feels that it has met all requirements.
Therefore, an appeal for a reverse in decision or a review by the relevant authorities.
On the other hand, if the building has met all safe requirements with acknowledgement from the inspection office, yet the permit is not issues, a mandamus will come into play to order the permit to be issued.