Common Informer Law and Legal Definition

Common informer refers to a person who sues to recover a penalty in a penal action. Common informer is also a person who habitually gives information without being specially required by law. A common informer gives information relating to crimes, offences or misdemeanors that have been committed and thus aid in prosecuting offenders. In some jurisdictions, such an action based on the information received by common informer may be instituted by the attorney general on behalf of a state. Sometimes a common informer is allowed to recover irrespective of any harm or damage sustained by him/her and sometimes recovery is allowed to the state itself. [Mayes v. Byers, 214 Minn. 54, 62-63 (Minn. 1943)].