Law Firm Vocab

By: Chase Kanipe

Law Firm Vocab

The purpose of this brochure is to walk new clients through any vocabulary and other information that they may need to know during their civil case.

Preliminary Vocab

Our first word is plaintiff. This is the person that brings one case against another in a court of law. This is normally the person that sues the defendant. The plaintiff is much like the accuser found in a criminal court case. The defendant is defending himself/herself against the plaintiff. A complaint is the document that sets forth the basis upon which a person is to be charged with an offense. Finally, a summons is a call by the courts to appear at court at a specific time.

Trial Vocab

After the complaint. The defendant must admit or deny the plaintiff's claims. This is their pleading. Next comes the pre-trial conference where it is decided whether or not the case should go to court. To avoid conflict mediation can be set up. This is an unbiased third party that helps the opposing sides reach an agreement. Also an arbitrator can be an official person two help the two sides settle the dispute. Finally the trial comes where both sides are heard. The Preponderance of the evidence or "Beyond any reasonable doubt," comes before a guilty verdict. In some cases, the defendant may appeal to a higher court.