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The Complete Vocabulary Builder Workbook



How to pronounce plaintiff (audio)

Dictionary definition of plaintiff

A person that brings a legal action against another, known as the defendant, in a court of law.
"The plaintiff's legal team presented a strong argument for negligence."

Detailed meaning of plaintiff

The plaintiff initiates the legal proceedings by filing a complaint or petition, which outlines the claims and allegations against the defendant. The purpose of the lawsuit is for the plaintiff to seek a remedy or relief, such as monetary damages, specific performance, or a declaratory judgment. The plaintiff bears the burden of proof in the case and must present evidence and witness testimony to support their claims. In a civil case, the Plaintiff is the person or entity that has suffered harm or injury and is seeking compensation from the Defendant, who is alleged to have caused the harm. In a criminal case, the Plaintiff is the state or government, who is seeking to punish the Defendant for breaking the law.

Example sentences containing plaintiff

1. The plaintiff waited anxiously, her files stacked high with evidence and claims.
2. In court, the plaintiff stood firm, eager to present his case to the judge.
3. His eyes met the defendant's, the plaintiff's gaze steady and resolute.
4. The plaintiff’s lawyer, confident and stern, addressed the attentive jury.
5. Evidence in hand, the plaintiff was ready to unveil the truths long hidden.
6. The plaintiff, teeming with a mix of nerves and courage, awaited her call.

History and etymology of plaintiff

The noun 'plaintiff' derives its etymological origins from the Old French word 'plaintif,' which means 'complaining' or 'lamenting.' This term, in turn, can be traced back to the Latin word 'plangere,' meaning 'to strike the breast' or 'to lament loudly.' In legal contexts, a 'plaintiff' is the individual who brings forth a legal action or complaint against another party, known as the defendant, in a court of law. The etymology of 'plaintiff' reflects the historical association between this term and the act of lodging a complaint or grievance, emphasizing the role of the plaintiff as the party who initiates legal proceedings by voicing their grievances or concerns in a formal legal setting.

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Further usage examples of plaintiff

1. Silence filled the court as the plaintiff’s impassioned plea echoed within.
2. With a stern face, the plaintiff listened to the defendant’s shaky defense.
3. The judge observed the plaintiff, assessing the conviction in his statements.
4. Each testimony was like a victory, the plaintiff's hope growing stronger.
5. Amidst the tension, the plaintiff’s unwavering voice told a story of justice.
6. The plaintiff in the court case presented compelling evidence to support their claims.
7. The plaintiff accused the defendant of breach of contract.
8. The plaintiff's attorney called a witness to testify on their behalf.
9. As the plaintiff, she sought damages for the injuries sustained in the accident.
10. The plaintiff filed a lawsuit against the company for product liability.
11. The plaintiff and the defendant reached a settlement before going to trial.
12. The plaintiff's lawyer cross-examined the defendant's witnesses rigorously.
13. The court heard the emotional testimony of the plaintiff during the trial.
14. The plaintiff alleged that the defendant had infringed upon their intellectual property rights.
15. The judge instructed the jury to carefully consider the evidence presented by the plaintiff.
16. The plaintiff's case relied on expert witnesses to establish liability.
17. The plaintiff was relieved when the jury ruled in their favor.
18. The plaintiff demanded compensation for the financial losses incurred due to the breach of contract.
19. The plaintiff's attorney delivered a powerful closing statement to sway the jury.
20. The plaintiff provided medical records as evidence of their injuries.
21. The court appointed a guardian ad litem to represent the interests of the minor plaintiff.
22. The plaintiff's legal team argued that the defendant's actions had caused emotional distress.
23. The plaintiff sought an injunction to prevent further harm from occurring.
24. The plaintiff's lawsuit alleged discrimination in the workplace.

GRE 5 (Graduate Record Examination), Conflict and Disagreement, Criminal Justice and Penalties, Legal Terms and Concepts


accuser, defendant, respondent, accused



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