Coercion generally means to impose one's will on another by means of force or threats. Coercion may be accomplished through physical or psychological means. It may occur in a variety of contexts, such as unfair trade practices, which prohibits coercion to sell insurance in most states.
Definitions vary by state and federal laws. For example, one state defines coercion as a crime when a person compels or induces a person to engage in conduct which the latter has a legal right to abstain from engaging in, or to abstain from engaging in conduct in which he has a legal right to engage, by means of instilling in him a fear that, if the demand is not complied with, the actor or another will cause physical injury to a person or cause damage to property.