AskDefine | Define amercement

Dictionary Definition

amercement n : money extracted as a penalty [syn: fine, mulct]

User Contributed Dictionary

English

Noun

  1. A non-statutory monetary penalty or forfeiture.

Extensive Definition

An amercement is a financial penalty in English law, common during the Middle Ages, imposed either by the court or by peers. While it is often synonymous with a fine, it differs in that a fine is a fixed sum prescribed by statute and was often voluntary, while an amercement is arbitrary. They were commonly used as a punishment for minor offences, as an alternative to imprisonment.
Referred to in Frantz v. U.S. Powerlifting Federation 836 F.2d 1063 (7th Cir. 1987). In a discussion about the imposition of FRCP Rule 11 sanctions on a plaintiff's attorney, the decision says, "The complaint in this case was frivolous, which calls at a minimum for censure of Victor D. Quilici, the plaintiffs' lawyer. Whether it calls for amercement - and, if so, whether Cotter or the Treasury is the appropriate beneficiary - is something the district court should consider as an initial matter."
Privacy Policy, About Us, Terms and Conditions, Contact Us
Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2
Material from Wikipedia, Wiktionary, Dict
Valid HTML 4.01 Strict, Valid CSS Level 2.1