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[[quoteright:300:[[Film/ExcessiveForce https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/excessive_force.png]]]]

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[[quoteright:300:[[Film/ExcessiveForce [[quoteright:299:[[Film/ExcessiveForce https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/excessive_force.png]]]]


Need an imposing title for your legal thriller or LawProcedural, but can't come up with a good MadLibsThrillerTitle? Try an Ominous Legal Phrase Title instead. Just browse through Black's Law Dictionary or the US Constitution and pick out a two-to-five word phrase you recognize from [[CourtroomDrama Courtroom Dramas]] or civics class. Ideally one of the words will be "guilt" or "malice" or "danger" or the like. The formal language imparts gravitas, the familiarity lets the reader or viewer recognize the genre at a glance, and the aforementioned negative-connotation words makes the whole title seem properly ominous.

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[[quoteright:300:[[Film/ExcessiveForce https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/excessive_force.png]]]]

Need an imposing title for your legal thriller or LawProcedural, but can't come up with a good MadLibsThrillerTitle? Try an Ominous Legal Phrase Title instead. Just browse through Black's Law Dictionary or the US Constitution and pick out a two-to-five word phrase you recognize from [[CourtroomDrama Courtroom Dramas]] or civics class. Ideally one of the words will be "guilt" or "malice" or "danger" or the like. The formal language imparts gravitas, the familiarity lets the reader or viewer recognize the genre at a glance, and the aforementioned negative-connotation words makes make the whole title seem properly ominous.

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* ''Film/LawAbidingCitizen''

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* ''Film/IntolerableCruelty'', a 2003 romantic comedy. The phrase is used in the law of divorce.


* ''Film/InherentVice'', a 2014 neo-noir film based on a book of the same title.




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* ''Literature/InherentVice'', a 2009 novel by Creator/ThomasPynchon.


* The ''VideoGame/GrandTheftAuto'' series

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* The ''VideoGame/GrandTheftAuto'' seriesseries, named after a term for carjacking - which you will be doing a whole lot of in these games.
* ''VideoGame/TheSimpsonsHitAndRun'', in keeping with the ''Grand Theft Auto'' parody.


* Almost all of the J.P. Beaumont mysteries by Creator/JAJance:

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* Almost all of the J.P. Beaumont ''Literature/JPBeaumont'' mysteries by Creator/JAJance:

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* Almost all of the J.P. Beaumont mysteries by Creator/JAJance:
** ''Until Proven Guilty''
** ''Injustice for All''
** ''Trial by Fury''
** ''Taking the Fifth''
** ''Improbable Cause''
** ''A More Perfect Union''
** ''Dismissed with Prejudice''
** ''Minor in Possession''
** ''Payment in Kind''
** ''Without Due Process'''
** ''Failure to Appear''
** ''Lying in Wait''
** ''Name Withheld''
** ''Breach of Duty''
** ''Partner in Crime''
** ''Justice Denied''
** ''Betrayal of Trust''
** ''Proof of Life ''


* ''Proven Guilty'', part of ''Literature/TheDresdenFiles''

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* ''Proven Guilty'', ''Literature/ProvenGuilty'', part of ''Literature/TheDresdenFiles''


* ''Film/AbsenceOfMalice:'' From U.S. libel law, post-Sullivan v. New York Times: A public figure suing must show that whoever said the bad and false thing about them did so with "actual malice", i.e., they either knew it wasn't true or were recklessly negligent in determining whether it was.
* ''Film/AdviseAndConsent:'' In the US, the Senate's constitutional role toward executive-branch nominees. In the UK, part of the formal enacting clause of all Acts of Parliament.



* ''Film/CrimesAndMisdemeanors''

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* ''Film/CrimesAndMisdemeanors''''Film/CrimesAndMisdemeanors:'' Part of the formal definition of an impeachable offense in US law; originating in UK law but obsolete there due to impeachments no longer being used.



* ''Film/DoubleJeopardy''

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* ''Film/DoubleJeopardy''''Film/DoubleJeopardy:'' the principle that one can't be tried twice for the same offense.



* ''Film/NothingButTheTruth'', a 2008 fictionalization of the Valerie Plume case, with Creator/KateBeckinsale and Creator/MattDillon. Released DirectToVideo in the US.
* ''Film/PresumedInnocent''

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* ''Film/IrreconcilableDifferences:'' one possible grounds for divorce.
* ''Film/NothingButTheTruth'', a 2008 fictionalization of the Valerie Plume case, with Creator/KateBeckinsale and Creator/MattDillon. Released DirectToVideo in the US. From the oath sworn by witnesses in court.
* ''Film/PresumedInnocent''''Film/PresumedInnocent:'' From the legal maxim that everyone is presumed innocent until evidence is prevented otherwise; the burden of proof always falls on the prosecution.



** ''Literature/AgainstAllEnemies''
** ''Literature/ClearAndPresentDanger'', made into a movie with Creator/HarrisonFord

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** ''Literature/AgainstAllEnemies''
''Literature/AgainstAllEnemies:'' Part of the US Presidential oath of office.
** ''Literature/ClearAndPresentDanger'', made into a movie with Creator/HarrisonFordCreator/HarrisonFord.


This title format seems to have been most popular from the late 80s through early 2000s, with Scott Turow, Richard North Patterson and Creator/TomClancy being among its most prominent users.

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This title format seems to have been most popular from the late 80s through early 2000s, with Scott Turow, Richard North Patterson Creator/ScottTurow, Creator/RichardNorthPatterson and Creator/TomClancy being among its most prominent users.



* ''Film/IndictAndConvict'', a 1974 made-for-TV movie starring William Shatner.

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* ''Film/IndictAndConvict'', a 1974 made-for-TV movie starring William Shatner.Creator/WilliamShatner.


Compare SciFiNameBuzzwords, LiteraryAllusionTitle, StockEpisodeTitles


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A subtrope of TerminologyTitle. Compare SciFiNameBuzzwords, LiteraryAllusionTitle, StockEpisodeTitles

StockEpisodeTitles.


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In short, the author must clearly have had ''scienter'' in using legal terms ''with malice aforethought'', such that we know they are ''culpable'' in having done so ''beyond a reasonable doubt'' and perhaps even ''to a moral certainty.'' Otherwise if the term is being used in a manner not related to legal terms, then this trope is ''acquitted'' of being applicable to the work.

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* ''Series/LawAndOrderCriminalIntent''

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[[folder:Fan Fiction]]
* Played with in the ''FanFic/MotionPractice'' series, where the full-length works all have legal phrases titles, but most of them aren't all that ominous. This suits the fact that, although the stories revolve around a cast of lawyers, they tend to be as much about the characters' tangled private lives as about legal thriller stuff.
[[/folder]]


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* ''Series/MurderOne''

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