overbreadth

noun

over·​breadth
ˌō-vər-ˈbredth, -ˈbretth; ˈō-vər-ˌ
1
: the quality or state of being overbroad
a statute void for overbreadth
2
: a doctrine in constitutional law: a law that prohibits protected conduct (as free speech) as part of its reach may be struck down as unconstitutional if the threat to protected activity is a substantial effect and if it cannot be clearly removed
also : a doctrine allowing a defendant accused of unprotected conduct to challenge a law for overbreadth especially in the area of free speech

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Cite this Entry

“Overbreadth.” Merriam-Webster.com Legal Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/legal/overbreadth. Accessed 30 May. 2024.

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