Malicious Prosecution

Malicious Prosecution

Malicious prosecution is a form of illegal activity where a lawyer pursues a case so aggressively and without clear intent that his pursuit oversteps the bounds of the law.

While most lawyers’ very jobs depend on their cases being tried to the utmost extremes, at times the interpretation of certain legal theories and the intense and somewhat baseless claims can lead a lawyer and their clients exposed to being tried for malicious prosecution.

Probable Cause

Because of malicious prosecution laws, lawyers are responsible for clearly showing that they have a case when they set out to try one.

Probable cause for the case must be presented before either a grand jury or judge or some other court of law before a case may be initiated.

In cases where probable cause seems unlikely a hearing before a judge can help in clearing up any elements of a case that need to be addressed.

Malicious Prosecution Charges

If an accusation of malicious prosecution occurs by one lawyer about another, the case is brought before a judge or court in order to evaluate whether the complaining party has the right to file such a charge.

Malicious prosecution charges may be frivolous and may be filed at times to extend or otherwise distract a case from moving forward. This behavior is severely dealt with, however, and not many lawyers charge malicious prosecution in this manner.

Malice Must Be Established

Malicious prosecution cases become additionally difficult to file and prove because the element of actual malice must be established.

Malice must be clearly differentiated from normal aggressive legal practices and may be difficult to prove.

While the malice may at times be merely inferred, most judges and courts of law require an overt case of malice before any malicious prosecution charge can be made.

Client as the Provocateur

In many cases of malicious prosecution, the client is actually the provocateur, the one who spurs on their attorney to more aggressively pursue their interests.

Such client-initiated insistence is fairly common and generally legal, because often a client has more at stake in a case than their legal representation.

Because of the client’s role in their own case, they tend to become more involved and may be more aggressive in pursuing their interests. Largely this is not only legal but encouraged behavior.

Some Cases Thrown Out of Court

Yet when a lawyer crosses the line and pursues someone else for no other reason than malice, then it becomes malicious prosecution and can be tried as being illegal.

Charges of malicious prosecution can actually harm a case to such an extent that it throws the case out of court. Malicious prosecution is largely unwarranted and protection from it is everyone’s right in the US.

Contact a Malicious Prosecution

If you or someone you know has been involved in a legal issue and you believe it is only because of a malicious action, rather than an actual legal issue, you may be able to defend yourself using malicious prosecution laws. Contact an experienced malicious prosecution lawyer through this website immediately for a free, no-obligation consultation and begin the process of healing.

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