Have You Been Injured? We're Ready to Fight for You.

Breaking Down Common Misunderstandings About Lawsuits

Published on Jan 10, 2019 at 9:56 am in Personal Injury.

The Law Office of Mike Campbell has joined forces with Thomas Law Offices as of September 1st, 2020. Click here for details.

We’ve all heard the term “lawsuit.”  Some people believe that our society is “sue happy”, or that we’re too “litigious”, which means that there are too many lawsuits on file with the courts.  Some of this belief comes from people’s mistaken understanding about what lawsuits are and why they are filed.  In order to break down those misunderstandings, we must define a few terms.
First, let’s explore what a lawsuit is.

According to Black’s Law Dictionary, a lawsuit is defined as follows:

“LAWSUIT. A vernacular term for a suit, action, or cause instituted or depending between two private persons in the courts of law. A suit at law or in equity; an action or proceeding in a civil court; a process in law instituted by one party to compel another to do him justice. Shepherd v. Standard Motor Co., 263 Ky. 329, 92 S.W.2d 337.”

In everyday language, a lawsuit is when one party files a case against another person in court.  In the personal injury context, an injured person brings a suit/case against the person(s) or entities responsible for his/her injuries.  The case begins when the injured person bringing the lawsuit files a “petition” or a “complaint”, which is a document explaining why the injured person is suing and who the injured person is suing.

Oftentimes petitions or complaints are referred to as “pleadings”, which is just a fancy legal word to describe what someone is asking the court to do.  In the personal injury context, the injured person is “pleading” or asking the court through its petition to hold the other party responsible for their injuries.

When Does it Make Sense to File a Lawsuit?

Believe it or not, there are not that many personal injury lawsuits filed every year.  We are told by insurance companies and corporations that personal injury lawsuits are clogging our courts and making it harder for our economy to grow.  The truth is that there are fewer and fewer lawsuits every year.  That’s because people typically settle most of their cases before any lawsuit is filed.

Lawsuits are difficult, expensive, and time-consuming, but they are necessary in certain cases.  If an injured person does not receive a reasonable offer from an insurance company or from an at-fault party, then the injured person should file a lawsuit.  Sometimes, the only way to hold someone or something accountable in a personal injury case is to file a lawsuit.

Each case is different and so the question of whether you should file a lawsuit depends on a number of factors.  For instance, what does your attorney advise you to do?  Do you believe your attorney has your best interests in mind?  Do you think you are getting a reasonable offer?  Are you comfortable with going to trial and potentially losing your case?  Are you comfortable with going through the process of a lawsuit, which includes time, inconvenience, and sometimes frustration?

These are among a few of the questions you have to answer and hopefully answer with your attorney when considering whether to file a lawsuit.  Since each case and every person is different, the answers will always vary from case to case and person to person.

Lawsuits are an important part of our judicial system.  Even though they get a bad name, lawsuits have held wrongdoers responsible for the injuries they cause and have shed a light on wrongful actions.  Even when a lawsuit is unsuccessful, the person bringing the suit can have some relief knowing that they did everything they could to bring justice to light.

The question of whether you should bring a lawsuit in your case is a difficult one to answer, and will depend on a number of factors.  If you want to discuss your case with an experienced trial attorney, our firm is here to talk with you and answer any questions you might have.

Free Case Evaluation

At Thomas Law Offices, our personal injury attorneys recognize that our potential clients are likely going through some of the most difficult times of their lives. We don't want you to have to worry about paying out of pocket for legal advice when you're just starting to learn your legal rights and options. That's why we provide free case evaluations. We'll offer our expert advice about your potential case and walk you through how we can help you.

Call us or fill out the form below to tell us about your potential case and a personal injury lawyer will get back to you as quickly as possible.

Meet Our Founder

Tad Thomas - Trial Lawyer

Tad Thomas

Managing Partner

Tad Thomas has dedicated his practice to representing plaintiffs in various types of civil litigation, including personal injury, business litigation, class actions, and multi-district litigation.

After graduating with his law degree in 2000 from Salmon P. Chase College of Law at Northern Kentucky University, Mr. Thomas immediately opened his own private practice and began representing injury victims.

In 2011, Thomas Law Offices was established in Louisville, Kentucky. Over the past decade, Mr. Thomas has expanded his firm and now has offices in three additional locations: Cincinnati, Ohio, Columbia, Missouri, and Chicago, Illinois. He is also a frequent lecturer on topics like trial skills and ethics and technology.

Legal & Firm News

Two Nurses Arrested in Ohio for Nursing Home Resident Neglect

In April 2022, Sunrise Manor nursing home’s director of nursing and assistant nursing director were arrested for allegations of patient neglect. Christina Drake and Jennie Elliott are being investigated following a criminal complaint filed in regard to an incident that occurred in April 2020. The two nursing staff members are facing multiple first-degree misdemeanor charges, […]

Read More

What Injuries Do Unattended Children Most Commonly Suffer?

It is a tragedy when a child is killed or injured in an accident that could have been prevented. Most of the time, it only takes one attentive adult to stop these tragic incidents from happening. The personal injury lawyers at Thomas Law Offices look at what injuries unattended children most commonly suffer and⁠—more importantly—how […]

Read More

What Injuries Can Result From Slamming on the Brakes?

No matter how safely you may drive, you will undoubtedly encounter situations in which you will have to take significant evasive maneuvers to avoid a car accident. While avoiding a motor vehicle crash is virtually always preferable to a collision, there are times when the evasive action can also cause harm.

Read More
Tad Thomas on The National Crime Victim Bar Association
Tad Thomas on AVVO
Tad Thomas on Lawyer Minds
Tad Thomas on American Association for Justice
Southern Trial Lawyers Association
Illinois Trial Lawyers Association
Ohio Association for Justice
Kentucky Justice Association
Tad Thomas on Attorney at Law Magazine
Tad Thomas on Attorney at Law Magazine
2021 Public Justice Member
AAJ Masters of Trial Law: Champion