Coercive Proceedings Law and Legal Definition

Coercive proceedings refer to proceedings that are initiated by the state, before a state forum, to enforce a violation of a state law. They are ongoing proceedings that the plaintiff did not initiate, but in which their presence were mandatory. Federal plaintiffs might block state coercive proceedings by bringing suit in the federal courts.

Coercive proceedings exist only where a state initiates an administrative proceeding to punish a federal plaintiff for a bad act. [Brown v. Day, 555 F.3d 882, 898 (10th Cir. 2009)].