lawyer up

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lawyer up (third-person singular simple present lawyers up, present participle lawyering up, simple past and past participle lawyered up)

  1. (intransitive, chiefly US, informal) To exercise one's right to legal representation, especially on the occasion of refusing to answer law-enforcement officials' questions without the presence of such legal representation.
    • 2001, Amanda Ripley, "Rage Of The Hamptons," Time, 15 July:
      By the time patrol cars got to the friend's house, so had her lawyer. With her attorney running blocker, police could not even ascertain if Grubman had been driving the car, says Suffolk County district attorney James Catterson. "She was lawyered up, as we like to say."
  2. (intransitive, chiefly US, informal, business) To conduct matters in accord with legal formalities or so as to avoid legal risk.
    Whenever we do business with those guys, we lawyer up to protect ourselves.
  3. (transitive, informal, business) To arrange in a way reflecting legal advice.
    By the time we finished lawyering up the agreement, we didn't want to sign it.