%% Image selected per Image Pickin' thread: http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/posts.php?discussion=1313087196007938800
%% Please do not change or remove without starting a new thread.
[[caption-width-right:300:[[WebVideo/YuGiOhTheAbridgedSeries Screw the Pythagorean Theorem, I have loopholes!]][[note]]The "correct" answer is 5 cm.[[/note]]]]

->'''Q:''' Explain Newton's First Law of Motion in your own words.\\
'''Calvin:''' ''(writing)'' Yakka foob mog. Grug pubbawup zink wattoom gazork. Chumble spuzz. ''([[AsideComment aside]])'' I love loopholes.
-->-- ''ComicStrip/CalvinAndHobbes''

Someone does something outrageous by finding a loophole in the rules, which were too narrowly written to consider such possibilities. Loophole Abuse is a form of RefugeInAudacity -- which still allows the agent to claim they were [[JustFollowingOrders following the rules]].

Sometimes the loophole doesn't really exist, but the competitor makes everyone ''think'' it does. Occasionally, the loopholes were planted to ''enable'' Loophole Abuse.

Contrast BotheringByTheBook, where someone becomes a pest by following the rules to the letter, ''without'' looking for loopholes. If someone else finds a loophole, it's MyRuleFuIsStrongerThanYours. Not unknown to be used in JustFollowingOrders and ExactWords. If a rule is instituted solely to close the loophole, you have an ObviousRulePatch. Also related is SuddenlySignificantRule, when a rule usually given little thought is invoked--either because it opens a loophole or closes one.

In games, this may often be the result of some kind of oversight by the creators. A programming oversight can cause someone to do something they did not intend, such as [[LordBritishPostulate killing a mob intended to be invincible]].

Common variants are the AnimalAthleteLoophole, which exists because no rule bars animals from playing sports, and FlexibleTourneyRules, wherein a character's abilities may violate the rules of the game. ScrabbleBabble is Loophole Abuse for ''TabletopGame/{{Scrabble}}''. When applied to TabletopGames, it becomes the annoying RulesLawyer. See also TryingToCatchMeFightingDirty.

In RealLife, this is rare for two simple reasons: First, loopholes are quickly closed once discovered. Second, many systems have RuleZero: some designated referee, judge, or [[GameMaster authority figure]] has the absolute final word and can simply throw the argument out wholesale, usually by claiming that the "spirit" of the rule never intended to allow what the "letter" of it seems to say. This rarely happens in fictional instances because of the RuleOfDrama; such a power would either be abused or written out as a StorybreakerPower.

A favorite weapon of the JackassGenie.

See also NotCheatingUnlessYouGetCaught. Related to the LordBritishPostulate, which may require some Loophole Abuse to pull off. If the requirement is "death" and the loophole in the definition allows the subject to "die" without ''actually'' dying, that's a subtrope known as the RevivalLoophole. May result in SheIsTheKing when a country would rather deal with a female King than a possibly bloody SuccessionCrisis.

Several examples refer to the [[RenamedTropes old name]] of this trope, Ain't No Rule.

* LoopholeAbuse/{{Advertising}}
* LoopholeAbuse/AnimeAndManga
* LoopholeAbuse/{{Comics}}
* LoopholeAbuse/{{Fanfic}}
* [[LoopholeAbuse/AnimatedFilm Film Animated]]
* [[LoopholeAbuse/LiveActionFilm Film Live-Action]]
* LoopholeAbuse/{{Literature}}
* LoopholeAbuse/LiveActionTV
* LoopholeAbuse/NewMedia
* LoopholeAbuse/NewspaperComics
* LoopholeAbuse/ProfessionalWrestling
* LoopholeAbuse/{{Puzzles}}
* LoopholeAbuse/{{Radio}}
* LoopholeAbuse/{{Roleplay}}
* LoopholeAbuse/TabletopBoardGames
* LoopholeAbuse/{{Theatre}}
* LoopholeAbuse/VideoGames
* LoopholeAbuse/{{Webcomics}}
* LoopholeAbuse/WebOriginal
* LoopholeAbuse/WesternAnimation
* LoopholeAbuse/RealLife
** [[LoopholeAbuse/RealLifeLaw Law]]
** [[LoopholeAbuse/RealLifeSports Sports]]