affirmative defense
affirmative defense see defense 2a

Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary of Law. . 1996.

affirmative defense
n.
In pleading, a response to a complaint that constitutes a defense and justification for the defendant’s actions instead of attacking the truth of the plaintiff’s allegations; affirmative defenses include self-defense, assumption of risk, estoppel, and insanity.

The Essential Law Dictionary. — Sphinx Publishing, An imprint of Sourcebooks, Inc. . 2008.


affirmative defense
When a defendant in a civil lawsuit files a response, usually called an "answer," the answer will state the defendant's denials of the claims made. In addition, the defendant may state affirmative defenses that excuse or justify the behavior on which the lawsuit is based. For example, an affirmative defense of "unclean hands" argues that the person bringing the lawsuit has acted badly in a way that should preclude any finding against the defendant.
Category: Accidents & Injuries
Category: Representing Yourself in Court
Category: Small Claims Court
Category: Small Claims Court & Lawsuits

Nolo’s Plain-English Law Dictionary. . 2009.


affirmative defense
A new fact or set of facts that operates to defeat a claim even if the facts supporting that claim are true.

Dictionary from West's Encyclopedia of American Law. 2005.


affirmative defense
I
A new fact or set of facts that operates to defeat a claim even if the facts supporting that claim are true.
II A defense raised in a responsive pleading (answer) relating a new matter as a defense to the complaint; affirmative defenses might include contributory negligence or estopped in civil actions; in criminal cases insanity, duress, or self-defense might be used.

Short Dictionary of (mostly American) Legal Terms and Abbreviations.

affirmative defense
n.
   part of an answer to a charge or complaint in which a defendant takes the offense and responds to the allegations with his/her own charges, which are called "affirmative defenses." These defenses can contain allegations, take the initiative against statements of facts contrary to those stated in the original complaint against them, and include various defenses based on legal principles. Many of these defenses fall into the "boilerplate" (stated in routine, non-specific language) category, but one or more of the defenses may help the defendant.
   See also: defense

Law dictionary. . 2013.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Affirmative defense — An affirmative defense is a category of defense used in litigation between private parties in common law jurisdictions, or, more familiarly, a type of defense raised in criminal law by the defendant. Affirmative defense can be classified as… …   Wikipedia

  • affirmative defense — In pleading, matter asserted by defendant which, assuming the complaint to be true, constitutes a defense to it. A response to a plaintiffs claim which attacks the plaintiffs legal right to bring an action, as opposed to attacking the truth of… …   Black's law dictionary

  • affirmative defense — In pleading, matter asserted by defendant which, assuming the complaint to be true, constitutes a defense to it. A response to a plaintiffs claim which attacks the plaintiffs legal right to bring an action, as opposed to attacking the truth of… …   Black's law dictionary

  • affirmative defense — A defense which amounts to something more than a mere denial of the plaintiff s allegations; a defense which sets up new matter not embraced within the ordinary scope of a denial of the material averments of the complaint. Among such defenses are …   Ballentine's law dictionary

  • affirmative defense — noun : a defense setting up new matter that provides a defense against the plaintiff s case, assuming the complaint to be true …   Useful english dictionary

  • affirmative defense — noun A defense against a suit or criminal charge that asserts mitigating facts rather than contesting the main fact of the allegation …   Wiktionary

  • defense — de·fense /di fens, dē ˌfens/ n 1: the act or action of defending see also self defense 2 a: the theory or ground that forms the basis for a defendant s opposition to an allegation in a complaint or to a charge in a charging instrument (as an… …   Law dictionary

  • affirmative — af·fir·ma·tive /ə fər mə tiv/ adj 1: asserting the existence of certain facts esp. in support of a cause of action affirmative proof 2: resulting from an intentional act affirmative concealment 3: involving or requiring application of effort …   Law dictionary

  • defense of property — Affirmative defense in criminal law or tort law where force was used to protect one s property. Short Dictionary of (mostly American) Legal Terms and Abbreviations …   Law dictionary

  • defense of property — Affirmative defense in criminal case consisting of justified force in protecting one s property though such force must be reasonable under all circumstances …   Black's law dictionary

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