in terrorem

adverb or adjective
in ter·​ror·​em | \ ˌin-te-ˈrōr-əm, -em \

Legal Definition of in terrorem

: by way of threat or intimidation : serving or intended to threaten or intimidate overbroad covenants not to compete which have in terrorem effect on employees— J. D. Calamari and J. M. Perillo

Note: In terrorem is most commonly used to describe a condition in a will that threatens an heir with forfeiture if he or she challenges the validity of the will.

History and Etymology for in terrorem

Latin, so as to produce terror

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Cite this Entry

“In terrorem.” Legal Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 27 Oct. 2020.

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