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Lawsuit terminology: plaintiffs and defendants

September 14, 2009

There are two main parties to a Texas personal injury lawsuit – the plaintiff and the defendant. These are legal terms that describe a person’s relationship to a lawsuit, in the most simple terms, whether the person is suing or being sued.

The plaintiff is the person who initiated the personal injury lawsuit. This is the individual who has suffered an injury and is seeking financial compensation for their losses. A plaintiff is also sometimes referred to as the “complainant” or “claimant.”

The defendant is the person who has been accused of causing the plaintiff’s injury. This is the individual who is being sued and from whom the plaintiff is attempting to recover damages.A Texas personal injury lawsuit can have multiple plaintiffs and defendants. For example, if Sally is driving her car and is rear-ended by an 18-wheeler, there could be several people Sally could sue for her injuries. Depending on the circumstances surrounding the accident, the defendants in her lawsuit could include both the driver of the 18-wheeler and the company who employs the driver.

It is extremely important that a personal injury lawsuit name all possible defendants from the outset. If a potential defendant is not brought into the lawsuit within the appropriate timeframe, you may forever lose your right to seek compensation from that individual. A Texas personal injury lawyer can help you identify all of the parties who may hold some fault for your accident.

Have you been injured in an accident? Then it’s time to contact Fears | Nachawati. One of our experienced Texas personal injury attorneys will provide you with free legal advice about your options and answer your questions about the litigation process. To receive your free legal assistance, email Fears | Nachawati at or call our toll-free number at 1.866.705.7584.



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