This is when a court-martial is formally ordered by someone with authority to do so (known as a “convening authority”). It is similar to the civilian process of when a case is “bound over” or “set” for trial. Essentially, it means the pre-trial phase is over and a person is officially going to face a criminal trial. The person referring the charges determines which type of court-martial an accused will face. Referral is governed primarily by Rule for Courts-Martial 601.