RunSensible’s Legal Dictionary

Your Guide to Clear and Concise Legal Definitions

Legal Dictionary


In a legal context, “discharge” can have several meanings, depending on the area of law. Judicial discharge refers to releasing a person from legal custody, often based on a court order or judgment.

In bankruptcy law, a discharge refers to releasing a debtor from personal liability for certain types of debts. Once a debt is discharged in bankruptcy, the debtor is no longer legally obligated to repay it.

In criminal law, discharge can refer to the dismissal of charges against a defendant. It may happen for various reasons, such as lack of evidence, a plea deal, or a successful legal motion.

In contract law, discharge occurs when the parties involved in a contract are relieved from their obligations. It can happen through performance (fulfilling the terms of the contract), mutual agreement, or breach of contract.

In employment law, discharge typically refers to the termination of an employee’s contract with an employer. This can be due to various reasons, such as poor performance, violation of company policies, or downsizing.

In criminal law or discussions related to firearms, discharge can refer to firing a gun or weapon.

In the realm of military law, discharge refers to the release of a member of the armed forces from their service obligations. There are various types of military discharges, including honorable discharge, general discharge, and dishonorable discharge, each with different implications for the individual’s rights and benefits.

In environmental law, discharge can refer to the release of pollutants or other substances into the environment, such as discharging wastewater into a river. Regulations govern such discharges to protect the environment.

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