THE Fifth Amendment was part of the Bill of Rights that was added to the Constitution on December 15, 1791.
The Fifth Amendment originally only applied to federal courts, but now applies to state courts through the Fourteenth Amendment.
What is The 5th Amendment?
In the United States constitution, the 5th Amendment writes that;
"No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a grand jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the militia, when in actual service in time of war or public danger;"
"nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation."
The fifth amendment covers a number of topics including the grand jury, double jeopardy, self-incrimination ("taking the fifth"), due process, and eminent domain.
What does 'pleading the Fifth' mean?
When an individual “takes the Fifth,” they invoke their right and refuse to answer questions or provide information that might incriminate them.
An individual can only invoke the Fifth Amendment in response to a communication that is compelled, such as through a subpoena or other legal process, writes Mololamken LLP.
When an individual takes the Fifth, their silence or refusal to answer questions cannot be used against them in a criminal case.
A prosecutor cannot argue to the jury that the defendant’s silence implies guilt.
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In a civil case or a civil enforcement action, the judge or jury can draw an adverse inference to support liability when the defendant invokes the Fifth Amendment