The Fifth Amendment is No Use to a Plaintiff
he Fifth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution protects an individual from being forced to testify in a manner that might incriminate him or her and subject the witness to prosecution. It is a defense, however, not a weapon that can be used against a defendant in a civil suit. Since civil litigation is entered into voluntarily, testimony in a civil suit brought by a plaintiff is not a compulsion to self-incrimination because the plaintiff can protect his or her privilege by dismissing the suit.
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