1 : to give (a creditor or debt) priority or preference [any preferred charges such as child support or alimony "In re Smiley , 427 P.2d 179 (1967)"]
2 : to bring forward for determination
: to bring (a charge) against someone [the various means by which a grand jury might charges "State v. Byrd , 399 S.E.2d 267 (1990)"]
Source: Merriam-Webster's Dictionary of Law ©1996. Merriam-Webster, Incorporated. Published under license with Merriam-Webster, Incorporated.