Understanding ‘Nolo Contendere’ (No contest) in Legal Issues

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Nolo contendere (Latin pronunciation: [ˈno. lo konˈten.de.re]) is a legal term that comes from the Latin phrase for “I do not wish to contend”. It is also referred to as a plea of no contest or no defense.

Imagine this, let’s say your brother started a fight with YOU, and YOU ended up breaking your brother’s nose in self-defence. He decided to press criminal charges against YOU and later decided to file a civil lawsuit as well. In this scenario, it would be better for YOU to plead ‘Nolo Contendere’ instead of Guilty.

A ‘Nolo Contendere’ plea means the defendant is not willing to contest the charges but doesn’t admit guilt. By doing so, YOU subject yourself to punishment by taking your brother to the hospital or buying him drugs but YOU will not plead guilty in Court because your brother started the fight.

It’s not uncommon for people to find themselves in situations where they have to face criminal charges. However, not many are aware of their rights and the legal options available to them. In cases where a defendant wishes to plead guilty without admitting to the crime, ‘Nolo Contendere’ is an option worth considering.

In summary, In a criminal proceeding, a defendant may enter a plea of nolo contendere, in which the defendant does not accept or deny responsibility for the charges but agrees to accept punishment.

The plea differs from a guilty plea because a “no contest” plea cannot be used against the defendant in another cause of action.

Some states do not allow defendants to ask the court’s permission to plead nolo contendere. In federal cases, the Rules of Federal Criminal Procedure allow such pleas, with the court’s permission.

Credit: Security Guy Media

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