Legalese Defined: Defendant and Plaintiff


The Plaintiff is the person bringing a lawsuit. For instance, say you are rear-ended at a light and break your leg. You then bring a lawsuit against the other driver. In that case, you would be the plaintiff. The plaintiff files the first complaint with the court. Personal injury attorneys or accident lawyers can help file the first complaint.


The Defendant is the person being sued. For instance, say you rear-ended someone at a light, breaking their leg. They then bring a lawsuit against you. In that case, you would be the Defendant. You are then accountable for a response to the plaintiff’s complaint. This is the point when the Plaintiff with first hear the defense argument.

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