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A formal declaration whereby a person expresses a personal objection or disapproval of an act. A written statement, made by a notary, at the request of a holder of a bill or a note that describes the bill or note and declares that on a certain day the instrument was presented for, and refused, payment.

A protest is generally made to save some right that would be waived unless a negative opinion was expressly voiced. Taxes are often paid under protest, an action by which a taxpayer reserves the right to recover the amount paid if he has sufficient evidence to prevail.

The document states the reasons for the refusal and provides for the notary to protest against all parties to the instrument declaring that they can be held liable for any loss or damages. A notice of protest is given by the holder of the instrument to the drawer or endorser of the instrument.


v. 1) to complain in some public way about any act already done or about to be done, such as adoption of a regulation by a county board, sending troops overseas, or use of the death penalty. 2) to dispute the amount of property taxes, the assessed evaluation of property for tax purposes, or an import duty. 3) n. a written demand for payment of the amount owed on a promissory note which has not been paid when due or a check which has been dishonored (not paid by the bank).


noun challenge, clamor, complaint, criticism, declaration of disapproval, declaration of dissent, declaration of opposition, defiance, disapproval, dissent, dissidence, formal criticism, forral declaration, formal declaration of dissent, hostile demonstration, opposition, outcry, remonstration, repudiation, resistance
Associated concepts: file a protest


verb announce, attack, challenge, complain, contradict, contravene, cry out against, dehort, demur, deny, disaffirm, disagree, disapprove, disclaim, discountenance, dispute, dissent, exclaim against, exhort against, express opposition, go contrary to, impugn, inveigh, negate, oppose, raise objections, recusare, refuse, remonstrate, reprehend, repudiate, revolt, speak against, take exception, traverse, veto, vote against
Associated concepts: payment under protest, protest a will, protest an election, written notice of protest
See also: admonition, avow, challenge, complain, complaint, conflict, confront, contention, counter, counteract, criticize, cross, demur, denial, deprecate, differ, disaccord, disaffirm, disagree, disallow, disapprobation, disapprove, disavow, disown, disparagement, dissension, dissent, drawback, except, exception, expostulate, fight, gainsay, impugnation, negate, negation, nonconformity, object, objection, oppose, opposition, oppugn, outcry, picket, prohibit, reaction, refuse, reject, remonstrance, remonstrate, renounce, reprehend, repudiate, resist, resistance


a procedure under which evidence of the dishonour of a BILL OF EXCHANGE is provided.

PROTEST, mar. law. A writing, attested by a justice of the peace or a consul, drawn by the master of a vessel, stating the severity of a voyage by which a ship has suffered, and showing it was not owing to the neglect or misconduct of the master. Vide Marsh. Ins. 715, 716. See 1 Wash. C. R. 145; Id. 238; Id. 408, n.; 1 Pet. C. R. 119; 1 Dall. 6; Id. 10; Id. 317; 2 Dall. 195; 3 Watts & Serg. 144; 3 Binn. 228, n.; 1 Yeates, 261.

PROTEST, legislation. A declaration made by one or more members of a legislative body that they do not agree with some act or resolution of the body; it is usual to add the reasons which the protestants have for such a dissent.

PROTEST, contracts. A notarial act, made for want of payment of a promissory note, or for want of acceptance or payment of a bill of exchange, by a notary public, in which it is declared that all parties to such instruments will be held responsible to the holder for all damages, exchanges, reexchanges, &c.
     2. There are two kinds of protest, namely, protest for non-acceptance, and protest for non-payment. When a protest is made and notice of the non- payment or non-acceptance given to the parties in proper time, they will be held responsible. 3 Kent, Com. 63; Chit. on Bills, 278; 3 Pardes. n. 418 to 441; Merl. Repert. h.t.; COID. Dig. Merchant, F 8, 9, 10; Bac. Ab. Merchant, &c. M 7.
     3. There is also a species of protest, common in England, which is called protest for better security. It may be made when a merchant who has accepted a bill becomes insolvent, or is publicly reported to have failed in his credit, or absents himself from change, before the bill he has accepted becomes due, or when the holder has any just reason to suppose it will not be paid; and on demand the acceptor refuses to give it. Notice of such protest must, as in other cases, be sent by the first post. 1 Ld. Raym. 745; Mar. 27.
     4. In making the protest, three things are to be done: the noting; demanding acceptance or payment or, as above, better security and drawing up the protest. 1. The noting, (q.v.) is unknown to the law as distinguished from the protest. 2. The demand, (q.v.) which must be made by a person having authority to receive the money. 3. The drawing up of the protest, which is a mere matter of form. Vide Acceptance; Bills of Exchange.

References in classic literature ?
I did not protest, first, because I dislike scandal, and, second, because I thought that your predecessors, MM.
Volumnia tremblingly protests that she will observe his injunctions to the letter.
Herr Sung smiled in the Frau Professor's eyes, and notwithstanding her protests insisted on pouring out a glass of wine for her.
I gave little heed to these protests, except that I lost no opportunity to go into as many parts of the state as I could, for the purpose of speaking to the parents, and showing them the value of industrial education.
I have read our protests about the Oldenburg affair and was surprised how badly the Note was worded," remarked Count Rostopchin in the casual tone of a man dealing with a subject quite familiar to him.
William politely escorted her downstairs, and somehow, amongst her protests and embarrassments, Mrs.
But neither struggles nor protests had any effect whatever.
After Numa had again breathed normally and was able to roar out his protests and his rage, his struggles increased to Titanic proportions for a short time; but as a lion's powers of endurance are in no way proportionate to his size and strength he soon tired and lay quietly.
And finally, I won't listen to any of your protests.
Her cries and protests would give way to whimperings and wailings, while the men about laughed at the strangeness of the love-affair between her and the Irish terrier.
Dan, in spite of her protests, dragged off his overcoat and made her put it on.
In a man's hands silence is the most terrible of all protests to the woman who loves him.