The Rottenstein Law Group will maintain this comprehensive (and ever-growing) library of articles about personal injury law generally for the benefit of all, whether you’ve suffered an injury or not.
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Reviewing past litigation over dangerous consumer products—drugs and medical devices, in particular—can shed some light on what might happen in current lawsuits.
In law, a cause of action is a set of facts that gives one a right to sue another (for money or property, or to enforce one’s rights). The term might also refer to the “legal theory” on which one brings a lawsuit.
Compensation refers, typically, to the award (usually consisting of money) given to the prevailing party to a lawsuit, once he or she has proven that the other party is both factually and legally responsible for his or her injuries. An aggrieved party’s compensation can be composed of awards of different types, in different amounts, for a variety of reasons.
A plaintiff’s complaint isn’t the end of the story. A defendant has the right and the opportunity to show that the actions complained of (if true) were justified, and/or that the plaintiff’s claim fails for any of several reasons. In other words, there are a variety of defenses—factual and legal—to claims, available to be raised by someone accused of wrongdoing.
In law, a duty of care is a legal obligation imposed on a person (or entity) requiring that he or she (or it) adhere to a standard of reasonable care while performing any acts that could foreseeably harm others. Duty of care is the first element that must be established to proceed with an action for negligence; the claimant must be able to show a duty of care imposed by law that the defendant has breached.
One of the necessary elements of almost every tort action is injury: The complaining party must show that he or she was actually injured, in some way, by the actions (or product) of the defendant. The law typically does not punish actions that have no significant adverse consequences. Accordingly, injury is a sine qua non of a tort claim.
A formal lawsuit is a complex thing, with nuances aplenty. Generally speaking, a lawsuit progress from the pleadings stage (in which the parties trade complaints and answers) through discovery (in which the parties request and disclose relevant factual information) to trial (at which the parties offer admissible evidence before a judge in a court of law). Motion practice can complicate—or streamline—the entire process, from start to finish.