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In Common-Law Pleading or Code Pleading, the initial statements made by a plaintiff that set forth a Cause of Action to commence a civil lawsuit; the different points of a plaintiff's declaration, each of which constitute a basis for relief. In Criminal Procedure, one of several parts or charges of an indictment, each accusing the defendant of a different offense.

The term count has been replaced by the word complaint in the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and many state codes of civil procedure. Sometimes count is used to denote the numbered paragraphs of a complaint, each of which sets out an essential element of the claim.

Federal and state rules of criminal procedure govern the standards that a criminal count must satisfy in federal and state criminal matters.

West's Encyclopedia of American Law, edition 2. Copyright 2008 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


n. each separate statement in a complaint which states a cause of action which, standing alone, would give rise to a lawsuit), or each separate charge in a criminal action. For example, the complaint in a civil (non-criminal) lawsuit might state: First Count (or cause of action) for negligence, and then state the detailed allegations; Second Count for breach of contract, Third Count for debt, and so forth. In a criminal case each count would be a statement of a different alleged crime. There are also so-called common counts which cover various types of debt. (See: common counts)

Copyright © 1981-2005 by Gerald N. Hill and Kathleen T. Hill. All Right reserved.


a paragraph in an indictment containing a distinct and separate charge.
Collins Dictionary of Law © W.J. Stewart, 2006

COUNT, pleading. This word, derived from the French conte, a narrative, is in our old law books used synonymously with declaration but practice has introduced the following distinction: when the plaintiff's complaint embraces only a single cause of action, and he makes only one statement of it, that statement is called, indifferently, a declaration or count; though the former is the more usual term.
    2. But when the suit embraces two or more causes of action, (each of which of course requires a different statement;) or when the plaintiff makes two or more different statements of one and the same cause of action, each several statement is called a count, and all of them, collectively, constitute the declaration.
    3. In all cases, however, in which there are two or more counts, whether there is actually but one cause of action or several, each count purports, upon the face of it, to disclose a distinct right of action, unconnected with that stated in any of the other counts.
    4. One object proposed, in inserting two or more counts in one declaration, when there is in fact but one cause of action, is, in some cases, to guard against the danger of an insufficient statement of the cause, where a doubt exists as to the legal sufficiency of one or another of two different modes of declaring; but the more usual end proposed in inserting more than one count in such case, is to accommodate the statement to the cause, as far as may be, to the possible state of the proof to be exhibited on trial; or to guard, if possible, against the hazard of the proofs varying materially from the statement of the cause of action; so that if one or more or several counts be not adapted to the evidence, some other of them may be so. Gould on Pl. c. 4, s. 2, 3, 4; Steph. Pl. 279; Doct. Pl. 1 78; 8 Com. Dig. 291; Dane's Ab. Index, h.t.; Bouv. Inst. Index, h.t. In real actions, the declaration is most usually called a count. Steph. Pl. 36, See Common count; Money count.

A Law Dictionary, Adapted to the Constitution and Laws of the United States. By John Bouvier. Published 1856.
References in periodicals archive ?
Other topics de Graaf addresses include Jewish American composers (especially Lazare Saminsky and Ernest Bloch), for whom Jewish musical traditions were "simultaneously exoticized, romanticized, and stigmatized." Chapter Five addresses the ways in which white composers borrowed musical elements from African-American genres, especially jazz and spirituals.
De Graaf also noted that cities like Dubai had a "huge responsibility" when it came to climate change.
“It is incredible to see what a loyal following we have,” said de Graaf. “I am happy we can help our visitors decide what episodes to watch.”
In Het zendingsbusje en de toverlantaarn a plea is made to reverse this state of affairs by Schutte, Tom van den End, in an annotated bibliography, and Gerrit de Graaf, in a review of present-day and an agenda of future research.
Jan Dekker hit three maximums against Jeffrey de Graaf
Stephanie, who aims to continue her studies with a PhD at Teesside University, looking at social stratification, said: "The project has been brilliant, it's helped me to develop my research skills and confidence while gaining a broad range of experience, from presenting to directors to hearing members of a pensioners' group discuss their memories of growing up." Teesside University academic Peter van der Graaf, said: "Teesside University and Fabrick are leading the way in demonstrating to residents and key stakeholders the value added to local communities by investing in the social fabric of housing estates."
It began with Scott's interviews of de Graaf and draws additional material from interviews conducted by intelligence agencies, further allowing de Graaf's voice to come through.
Ms Graaf provided the polytechnic officials with a brief summary of the educational programmes supported by the US through its embassy in Bahrain.
On-loan Hibs man De Graaf stepped up to make it 2-2 but his celebrations were cut short as PSV won a penalty of their own.
"The stem cells, rather than being maintained in a 'resting state' until needed, were being told to continually cycle and produce mature blood cells," de Graaf said.
Carolyn de Graaf and Prof Doug Hilton from the Molecular Medicine division and Prof.
Evert de Graaf, damp proofing expert, said: "It's completely different from UK methods because we do not contain damp using chemical injections and waterproof coatings - we remove it.