Malicious prosecution can feel a lot like an intimidation tactic. What is malicious prosecution? Raised often by those who are facing legal claims, malicious prosecution is essentially a threat that is made to “scare off” a claimant from pursuing their claims. For example, if an individual or business intends to bring legal claims against a would-be defendant, the defendant’s legal team almost always responds by threatening the claimant with malicious prosecution, clamoring that if the claimant proceeds, he/she will face retribution by the defendant by way of a malicious prosecution suit.
The good news is that malicious prosecution actions are disfavored in many states, including California, and difficult to actually succeed upon. To have a viable malicious prosecution, the defendant needs to actually succeed in some fashion by obtaining a “favorable termination” of the case. This can include a favorable jury verdict, a favorable ruling on a brief that ends the case, or even a voluntary dismissal, under certain circumstances. In addition, the defendant needs to prove that the claimant brought the claim “without probable cause.” The “malice” element is often demonstrated by showing that the claimant brought the case to “vex, annoy, or injure” the defendant.
If you or your business has received threats of malicious prosecution, the appropriate next step is to retain counsel to prepare an appropriate response. The response should be assertive, firm, and raise the necessary counterpoints, for example, identifying the reasonable grounds that exist for the lawsuit, and also raising SLAPP/anti-SLAPP defenses, if applicable.
Axis Legal Counsel assists clients in defending against and bringing malicious prosecution actions. If you need assistance with a malicious prosecution threat that is being made against you or your business in California, please contact us at (213) 403-0100 for a confidential consultation. Axis’s managing attorney Rabeh M. A. Soofi is ranked one of the “Top Women Lawyers in Southern California” and is malicious prosecution lawyer with experience in malicious prosecution claims.
► Getting Legal Help
AXIS Legal Counsel’s Business and Corporations Practice provides legal advice to numerous businesses with a wide range of business matters. Axis represent small, medium-sized, and large business clients with a wide variety of business and corporate law matters. We represent early-stage companies as well as established businesses on a wide variety of business law matters, ranging from contracts and transactions, intellectual property, labor/employment law, business financing, mergers and acquisitions, real estate, insurance, business succession planning, and general advice and counsel. For information on retaining AXIS Legal Counsel to represent your business in connection with any legal matter, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call (213) 403-0100 for a confidential consultation.
Our Business & Corporations Practice
Labor & Employment Practice Areas
► Download All 2020 Business Essentials Package – $49 Only
Check out our complete line of handy forms and templates for California small businesses.
Download Our Entire Suite of
Templates, Policies, and Procedures
Our 17 Most Popular Forms – Only $49
*** NOW UPDATED FOR 2019 ***
► Submit a Question
Have a question that is not answered? Submit your question below so we can help other businesses by contributing to the knowledge base.