without prejudice

  

Definition

Law phrase: Without abandonment of a claim, privilege, or right, and without implying an admission of liability.

(1) When used in a document or letter, without prejudice means that what follows (a) cannot be used as evidence in a court case, (b) cannot be taken as the signatory's last word on the subject matter, and (c) cannot be used as a precedent. Contents of such documents normally cannot be disclosed to the courts but, when a party proposes to settle a dispute out-of-court, it is the genuineness of the effort that determines whether the proposal can disclosed or not, and not whether the words without prejudice were used.

(2) When a court case is dismissed, or a court order is issued without prejudice, it means that a new case may be brought or a new order issued on the same basis as the dismissed case or the original order. See also with prejudice.


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