fall foul of

fall (a)foul of (someone or something)

1. To become disliked or to come in conflict with someone or something due to one's actions, often resulting in further trouble or conflict. Since you're new here, be careful not to fall afoul of Bill—he'll keep you off of every case if he's mad at you. I fell foul of the committee, and now I'm not sure how to improve my reputation. Ted fell afoul of the law when he was still a kid, and he's been in and out of jail ever since.
2. obsolete In sailing, to strike the side of another ship. The two vessels, pitched and tossed as they were by the storm, fell foul of one another and sank into the cold Atlantic ocean.
See also: fall, of
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.

fall (a)foul of someone or something

 and run (a)foul of someone or something
to get into a situation where one is opposed to someone or something; to get into trouble with someone or something. Dan fell afoul of the law at an early age. I hope that you will avoid falling afoul of the district manager. She can be a formidable enemy. I hope I don't run afoul of your sister. She doesn't like me.
See also: fall, foul, of
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

fall foul of

come into conflict with and be undermined by.
2004 Sunday Business Post Australia's biggest wine-maker, Foster's Group, is the latest company to fall foul of the wine surplus, which is set to continue for at least two years.
See also: fall, foul, of
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

fall foul of ˈsb/ˈsth

do something which gets you into trouble with somebody/something: They fell foul of the law by not paying their taxes.Try not to fall foul of Mr. Jones. He can be very unpleasant.
See also: fall, foul, of, Sb, sth
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017
See also:
References in periodicals archive ?
As Tom Beezer of the UK Law Firm Bond Pearce in a Client Briefing Paper of 7 July, 2010 (2) has rightly pointed out: "We don't want to scaremonger but lavish corporate hospitality could fall foul of the new legislation.
Two Chinese singers have become the first people in the country to fall foul of new rules banning lip-synching nearly two years after widespread criticism of miming at the Beijing Olympics' opening ceremony.
The MPs say e-Borders breaches free movement rules and may also fall foul of data protection laws.
A 13-year-old boy has become the latest player to fall foul of golfing red tape.
BUSINESSES in Liverpool are being warned not to fall foul of TV licensing laws during the forthcoming World Cup tournament.
The new regulations are confusing, and parents need to understand that there's a pounds 30 fine if you fall foul of the law.
On the question of a female Archbishop of Canterbury, likely to be strongly opposed by many Anglicans in Africa and Asia, he said that the churcla would fall foul of Britain's Sex Discrimination Act if its highest post were denied to women.
HMV boss Alan Giles said he didn't think that was enough to fall foul of competition watchdogs.
CHECK you are properly insured if taking your car abroad as many British drivers fall foul of foreign motoring rules, claim the British Insurance Brokers' Association.
The insurance pool, led by German insurer Allianz AG, is said to be considering closing the pool because of fears that it may fall foul of European Union competition rules.
German champion jockey Andrasch Starke became the first rider in three years to fall foul of the no-drinks rule when he missed out on five rides at the big Boxing Day meeting in Hong Kong -and then had the ban lifted awaiting the outcome of a blood test.
Nurses risk breaking patient confidentiality but could fall foul of police if they don't report drugs.
"I don't follow it or go on it but if they fall foul of the rule then it may make then think twice next time.
SMALL firms have been warned that their websites could fall foul of new EU rules governing the use of cookies.
The Military Police will be out and about, performing random checks and nobody wants to fall foul of them.