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Definition of "barratry" [bar•ra•try]

  • The offense of persistently instigating lawsuits, typically groundless ones. (noun)
  • An unlawful breach of duty on the part of a ship's master or crew resulting in injury to the ship's owner. (noun)
  • Sale or purchase of positions in church or state. (noun)

American Heritage(R) Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright (c) 2011 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

Use "barratry" in a sentence
  • "In criminal and civil law, barratry is the act or practice of bringing repeated legal actions solely to harass."
  • "In another oration of Demosthenes we discover glimpses of what by many has been deemed maritime insurance, or rather of the fraud at present called barratry, which is practised to defraud the insurer: but, as Park in his learned Treatise on Marine Insurance has satisfactorily proved, the ancients were certainly ignorant of maritime insurance; though there can be no doubt frauds similar to those practised at present were practised."
  • "It is not the same as barratry, which is active encouragement of lawsuits."