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any form of compulsion or constraint that compels or induces a person to act otherwise than freely. it may be physical force but is more often used to desscribe any pressure that is brought to bear on another's free will. In testamentatry law, if undue influence is exerted upon the testator, the coercion will vitiate the effect of the instrument. In criminal law, improper conduct that coerces the defendant into making any incriminatory statement will void the confession.

See criminal coercion; duress.
Source: Barron's Dictionary of Legal Terms, Steven H. Gifis, 5th Edition; © 2016

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