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An impoverished person who is supported at public expense; an indigent litigant who is permitted to sue or defend without paying costs; an impoverished criminal defendant who has a right to receive legal services without charge.

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

PAUPER. One so poor that he must be supported at the public expense.
    2. The statutes of the several states make ample provisions for the support of the poor. It is not within the plan of this work even to give an abstract of such extensive legislation. Vide 16 Vin. Ab. 259; Botts on the Poor Laws; Woodf. Landl. & Ten. 901.

A Law Dictionary, Adapted to the Constitution and Laws of the United States. By John Bouvier. Published 1856.
References in periodicals archive ?
Les populations d'origine chinoise et japonaise se sont installees a Los Angeles des la fin du XIXe siecle et sont segreguees dans des zones urbaines pauperisees. La patrimonialisation de ces quartiers date des annees 1970, lorsque la municipalite de Los Angeles prend conscience de leur interet touristique.
It would not only pauperise the farmers, a majority of whom are Hindus, but also mark the end of the Indian cow.
I'm no Tory, but I applaud John Gummer's point that Washington has yet again extolled the virtues of free trade but seems unable to stand up to its own powerful farm lobby' on cotton alone, the US produces $3 billion-worth of cotton annually and spends $4 billion subsiding it, which helps to pauperise the economy of West Africa.
The Huddersfield Anarchist League (HAL) say plans to cut council tax support by up to 29% will "pauperise" some residents.
If he underwent the costly treatment, it would pauperise his family.