Amendment V

No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

The final phrases of the Fifth Amendment established the limitations on the principle of eminent domain. In the 20th century, the Fifth Amendment became most noted for its prohibition of forced self-incriminating testimony, and "I plead the Fifth" became a catchphrase for the amendment.

This application of the amendment is, however, uncontroversial and has not figured prominently in Supreme Court decisions. Much less clear is the meaning of the due process provision. A century ago, it was often argued that the Fifth Amendment prohibition against depriving an individual of liberty meant that the right to enter into contracts, which represents a liberty, is infringed when government regulations fix such things as minimum wages. This interpretation of due process has generally fallen out of favor.

Ratified in 1791


See Table of Amendments.