Duhaime's Law Dictionary

With Prejudice Definition:

A statement or order that is conclusive between the parties as to the dispute between them.

Related Terms: Without Prejudice, Under Protest

In letters and documents, the addition of with prejudice represents an admission by the signatory or by the person who tenders the document with prejudice, that the contents are admissible against him or her, particularly if the contents run against that person's interest.

In Court orders, the words with prejudice are assumed since a court order is conclusive of the rights of the parties in regards to the issue being thereby resolved. Where these words are added, redundancy notwithstanding, they mean that the order is res judicata.

In Schuster v Northern Co., Justice Freebourn of the Supreme Court of Montana wrote:

"The term with prejudice as used in a judgment of dismissal ... is the converse of the term without prejudice, and a judgment or decree of dismissal with prejudice is as conclusive of the rights of the parties as if the suit had been prosecuted to a final adjudication adverse to the plaintiff.

"The terms with prejudice and without prejudice have been recognized as having reference to, and being determinative of, the right to bring a future action."


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