malicious prosecution

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malicious prosecution (countable and uncountable, plural malicious prosecutions)

  1. A common law intentional tort which arises from a party (1) intentionally and maliciously instituting or pursuing (or causing to be instituted or pursued) a legal action (civil or criminal) that is (2) brought without probable cause and (3) dismissed in favor of the other party.

Usage notes[edit]

In some jurisdictions, "malicious prosecution" is reserved for the wrongful initiation of criminal proceedings, while "malicious use of process" refers to the wrongful initiation of civil proceedings.

Related terms[edit]