Asked in Criminal Law for Massachusetts

Q: Is it worthwhile to pursue a criminal complaint after a lawyer or plaintiff lies under oath

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1 Lawyer Answer
Lissa McKinney
Lissa McKinney
  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Acton, MA
  • Licensed in Massachusetts

A: Probably not. When you say 'worthwhile' do you mean in a financial sense? Then no. Unless the lie impacted you in a manner where you can prove some measure of damages or harm to yourself. While it is a thin standard at the clerk's hearing, it is still 'probable cause'. If it is your word against their word, that is not likely to be enough. IF there is no misunderstanding, and it is a lie that you have any independent information or documentation that is better proof. This could be a tape recording from another proceeding where something directly opposite was stated, or a document filed under oath in a court proceeding. Telling a lie is not a crime unless it was under oath, then it is perjury. Both times must be under oath, and must be intentional without the possibility of error, misunderstanding etc. If it is that kind of a lie,then there are licensing authorities that may be interested as well.

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