Who Are The Plaintiffs And Defendants In Personal Injury Cases?

The majority of personal injury cases in New York are settled out of court. Nevertheless, some disputes cannot be resolved without court intervention. If your personal injury attorney files a lawsuit, it is beneficial to understand the parties involved and their respective roles.

Who is the Plaintiff in a Personal Injury Lawsuit?

Plaintiff represents the injured party. An example of a plaintiff would be a person injured in a hotel slip-and-fall or a car accident driver. A plaintiff may also be a person who was injured by a defective product.

There could be multiple claimants. For instance, the plaintiffs may consist of multiple individuals injured in a commercial truck accident.

Who is the Defendant in a Personal Injury Lawsuit?

The defendant allegedly caused the plaintiff’s injuries. The actions of the defendant directly caused the plaintiff’s injuries and damages. Similar to plaintiffs, there may be multiple defendants in a personal injury lawsuit.

These are examples of defendants:

  • The driver, pedestrian, or cyclist (traffic accidents)
  • Product manufacturers ( product liability )
  • Owners of real estate, landlords, and business owners ( premises liability )
  • Physicians, hospitals, registered nurses, and other medical providers ( medical malpractice claims)
  • Owners of canines, property owners, and tenants ( dog bite cases )
  • Government institutions (slip and fall accidents, car accidents, public transportation injuries, etc.)
  • Contractors, subcontractors, and property owners are parties to a construction contract ( construction accidents )

In a personal injury lawsuit, any party who causes another person harm could be named as a defendant. The jury decides whether the defendant is responsible for the injuries sustained by the plaintiff. If so, the jury determines the amount of damages to be awarded to the plaintiff.

Other Parties to a Personal Injury Lawsuit

There may be additional defendants in the personal injury lawsuit.

Examples include:

  • Joinder – A person who joins a lawsuit as a plaintiff because he or she is entitled to compensation for the same incident.
  • Impleader – A third party that is brought into a lawsuit as a defendant.
  • As an illustration, the defendant may sue a third-party defendant.
  • Intervention – A person with the legal right to participate in a lawsuit.
  • Interpleader – A party that believes it has a claim based on the same or similar circumstances joins a case to compel other parties to litigate a dispute.

Your attorney will describe each role as it pertains to your case. If you have questions, you should contact your lawyer.

What Happens After I File a Personal Injury Lawsuit in New York?

Each case of personal injury is unique. Nonetheless, many steps are typical in injury cases.

The defendant is permitted to respond to the allegations in your complaint. In addition, the defendant may file a counterclaim. The counterclaim could include fault allegations against you or affirmative defences.

For instance, the defendant may assert that your claim is barred by the statute of limitations. All personal injury claims are subject to the New York statute of limitations filing deadlines.

Another possible defence is the assertion of comparative fault. The defendant could assert that you contributed to the cause of your injury. Your compensation could be reduced by your percentage of fault if the jury agrees.

Each party is permitted to request information and documents from the other. Each party can determine the strength of the opposing party’s case based on the evidence.

These are examples of discoveries:

  • Depositions
  • Demands to Produce Records
  • Interrogatories
  • Requests for Admissions Subpoenas

If a party refuses to participate in discovery, the opposing party may petition the court for an order compelling participation.

After the discovery phase concludes, the parties may negotiate a settlement. Settlement negotiations may be conducted informally. However, the parties may also agree to settle the dispute through mediation or arbitration.

Pretrial motions resolve legal issues prior to the commencement of a trial. The defendant may, for instance, file a motion to dismiss the case or to suppress evidence. The plaintiff may request summary judgement or file a motion to introduce expert witness testimony.

Throughout the trial, each party presents its case. The jury then decides if the defendant is responsible for the plaintiff’s damages. If either party is dissatisfied with the outcome, they may file an appeal.

What Should I Do After an Accident or Injury in New York?

Immediate medical attention is required. You must establish that the defendant was responsible for your injuries. In a personal injury case, medical records are essential proof.

You should seek legal counsel as soon as possible regarding an accident claim. Consultations with personal injury attorneys are complimentary. Learn about your legal options and the steps you must take to protect your right to fair compensation following an accident or injury at no cost.

Contact Our Personal Injury Law Firm

Contact Abrams Law Group for a free consultation if you’ve been hurt in an accident and require legal assistance.

Abrams Law Group
104-70 Queens Boulevard, Suite 502
Forest Hills, NY 11375
(718) 997-9797

Follow us on Instagram and Twitter for settlement updates

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.

Scroll to Top