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Tag Archives: Malicious prosecution

Compensatory Damages in Malicious Prosecution Actions

By Robert Ross |

WHAT ARE COMPENSATORY DAMAGES? Compensatory damages are damages designed to make the plaintiff “whole.” Put another way, compensatory damages attempt to compensate the plaintiff–to “pay back” the damages the plaintiff has incurred as a result of the defendant’s wrongful conduct. Generally speaking, only prevailing plaintiffs are able to recover damages. This means the plaintiff must… Read More »

When is an Action “Terminated” for Purposes of Malicious Prosecution?

By Robert Ross |

THE UNDERLYING ACTION GIVING RISE TO MALICIOUS PROSECUTION CLAIMS MUST BE “FINALLY TERMINATED” BEFORE A PARTY CAN BRING THE CLAIM FOR MALICIOUS PROSECUTION.  The elements of a successful malicious prosecution claim include “full, final, and favorable” resolution of the underlying claim. The “favorable” element must be fulfilled in favor of the party claiming malicious prosecution —… Read More »

When is a Lawsuit “Commenced” For Purposes of Malicious Prosecution?

By Robert Ross |

MALICIOUS PROSECUTION CLAIMS APPLY ONLY TO LEGAL ACTIONS COMMENCED WITH LEGALLY SUFFICIENT MALICE AND WITH A LACK OF PROBABLE CAUSE. Although “commencement” of an action is not a specified element of a malicious prosecution claim, an action must be commenced before it can be “fully and finally terminated” — another element the plaintiff must prove to prevail… Read More »

Who Can Be Sued For Malicious Prosecution?

By Robert Ross |

The law says that liability ultimately lies with those “responsible” for engaging in malicious prosecution. However, liability does not necessarily attach to everyone involved in the relevant legal action or proceeding. PARTIES TO LEGAL ACTIONS MAY BE HELD LIABLE FOR MALICIOUS PROSECUTION. Individuals (or entities) that unsuccessfully prosecute a legal action or engage in legal processes under inappropriate circumstances… Read More »

Proceedings That Do Not Support Malicious Prosecution Claims

By Robert Ross |

NOT ALL LEGAL PROCEEDINGS SUPPORT MALICIOUS PROSECUTION CLAIMS Although many legal proceedings, civil and criminal, can support a claim for malicious prosecution when the elements of the claim are present, there are some types of proceedings which cannot form the basis of a malicious prosecution action. For various reasons, the law and California courts have placed… Read More »

What Kinds of Cases Can Support A Claim For Malicious Prosecution?

By Robert Ross |

MALICIOUS PROSECUTION CLAIMS ARE NOT AVAILABLE IN ALL LEGAL CASES People are often confused by the difference between “malice,” as used in a layperson’s context, and malicious prosecution, which is a legal cause of action (a claim that can be brought before a court in proper circumstances). While people may act “maliciously” in a… Read More »

Limits on Malicious Prosecution Claims in California

By Robert Ross |

CERTAIN SITUATIONS BAR OR LIMIT MALICIOUS PROSECUTION CLAIMS Under California law, the existence of certain facts and situations can make it impossible (or difficult) to file a malicious prosecution claim. Generally, these situations create “privileges” on behalf of certain defendants (or potential defendants) rendering them immune from malicious prosecution suits or liable only in… Read More »

Defenses to Malicious Prosecution: Advice of Counsel

By Robert Ross |

Reliance on the Advice of Legal Counsel is an Affirmative Defense to Malicious Prosecution Claims. “Reliance on the advice of counsel” is one of several affirmative defenses available to the defendant in a malicious prosecution action. While substantive defenses attempt to prove the defendant’s innocence of the charges,affirmativedefenses invoke the existence of other facts which excuse a… Read More »

“Unclean Hands” as a Defense to Malicious Prosecution

By Robert Ross |

What is the “Unclean Hands” Defense? “Unclean hands” belongs to the group of legal defenses known as “affirmative defenses.” Affirmative defenses are, as the name suggests, a type of defense in which the defendant claims that some other fact (or set of facts)–normally different from the facts at issue in the case itself–defeat or mitigate the… Read More »

Statutes of Limitations on Malicious Prosecution Actions

By Robert Ross |

What is a Statute of Limitations? A “statute of limitations” is a law (a “statute”) describing the length of time a plaintiff has to bring a lawsuit or claim. After the end of the period named in the statute, the plaintiff’s claim is “barred” and normally the plaintiff loses the right to sue and recover… Read More »

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