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Malfeasance, Misfeasance And Nonfeasance
Malfeasance refers to the committing of a wrongful act which is clearly unlawful.
It is a term which is often used on public officials.
When we discuss malfeasance in contracts, people typically talk about misfeasance and nonfeasance as well.
As opposed to malfeasance, misfeasance refers to a proper act done in an improper manner. So it lacks, or has a lesser, illegal intention.
Nonfeasance refers to the lack of action when action should have been taken. Sometimes the worst things to do is to do nothing.
For example, if a real estate agent chooses not to inform a home seller of a higher offer on the table, it is malfeasance as he has gone against looking out for the best interest of the client. If he choose to inform the client via snail mail which would take 14 days instead of an instant SMS, then it’s misfeasance. If he forgets to inform the seller, it is nonfeasance.
Do consult the advice of a lawyer when in doubt.