Am I in trouble if I send an angry letter to a state offical?

UPDATED: Nov 11, 2011

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Am I in trouble if I send an angry letter to a state offical?

Asked on November 11, 2011 under Criminal Law, Indiana


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

How "angry" is "angry"?

If you express, even with vitriol and profanity, your disagreement with his or her policies or actions, you have done nothing wrong--not only does the 1st Amendment protect speech (especially speech made about or to the government), but there generally no law against sending angry letters.

On the other hand, if your letter either explicitly made threats, or even implicitly threatened the person (e.g."bad things happen to people who do what you did"--even if you meant that in the sense of "karma," it could easily be taken as a threat), then you probably have violated one or more laws, including harassment, making terroristic threats, possibly some sort of interferring with government operations, etc.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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