lawyer up

intransitive verb

Definition of lawyer up

chiefly US, informal

  1. :  to obtain the services of a lawyer especially while being investigated for possible wrongdoing What really spooks the honest, hard-working, likable, routinely successful detectives on “N.Y.P.D. Blue” is the prospect of a suspect “lawyering up.” The detectives cajole and threaten to keep the probable perp from exercising his right to counsel, because once a sharp lawyer appears the client will say nothing and the audience will be deprived of the confession that climaxes so many episodes. — Walter Goodman, New York Times, 23 Feb. 1995 The people at Madoff who had been highly compensated were the ones they were looking at. In the end, most of those people “lawyered up” or fled. — Eleanor Squillari et al., Vanity Fair, June 2009

lawyered up

adjective They should tell him the only course of action is to show up and tell the truth, come what may. But now he's all lawyered up, so that's not going to happen. He's all but untouchable now. — Christine Brennan, USA Today, 22 May 2014

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First Known Use of lawyer up


Seen and Heard

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to criticize severely

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