jailhouse lawyer

noun

Definition of jailhouse lawyer 

: a prison inmate self-taught in the law who tries to gain release through legal maneuvers or who advises fellow inmates on their legal problems

Examples of jailhouse lawyer in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

Clarissa couldn’t afford another attorney, so Ben persuaded a fellow-inmate, a jailhouse lawyer, to help him write a petition for a new trial, which Ben filed in January, 2014. Jennifer Gonnerman, The New Yorker, "How One Woman’s Fight to Save Her Family Helped Lead to a Mass Exoneration," 19 May 2018 By then, Martinez had become an accomplished jailhouse lawyer. Bruce Rubenstein, The Atlantic, "'I Don’t See Much Mercy in Donald Trump or Jeff Sessions'," 9 Dec. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'jailhouse lawyer.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of jailhouse lawyer

1969, in the meaning defined above

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Dictionary Entries near jailhouse lawyer

jail delivery

jailer

jailhouse

jailhouse lawyer

jail liberties

Jain

Jainism

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The first known use of jailhouse lawyer was in 1969

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More Definitions for jailhouse lawyer

jailhouse lawyer

noun

Legal Definition of jailhouse lawyer 

: a prison inmate self-taught in the law who tries to gain release through legal maneuvers or who advises fellow inmates on their legal problems

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