Every personal injury case has at least two parties: the “plaintiff” and “defendant.” If you or a loved one have been injured and choose to file a lawsuit, you will be the plaintiff. But then, who is the defendant in an Orlando personal injury case? 

It is important to understand the defendant’s role before filing any lawsuit, as that is who can be held accountable for the harm caused by their conduct.

What Is a Defendant in Orlando, FL?

What Is a Defendant in Orlando, FL?

A defendant is a person, company, or other entity being sued. In personal injury lawsuits, the defendant is the party accused of acting negligently or wrongfully, which causes your injuries or other losses. A defendant is typically accused of breaching a duty of care that results in harm.

Differences Between a Defendant and a Plaintiff in Orlando, FL?

The defendant and plaintiff have distinct roles in a personal injury lawsuit. The plaintiff is the party who initiates the lawsuit and alleges that they have suffered damages due to the defendant’s actions. They have the burden of proving their case by a preponderance of the evidence. This means showing that it is more likely than not that a defendant’s negligence caused their injuries.

The defendant must respond to the plaintiff’s allegations. While the plaintiff tries to prove their case, a defendant focuses on refuting their claims. They may allege defenses or present evidence of comparative negligence to diminish liability by asserting you bear some or all of the responsibility for your injuries.

Examples of Defendants in Orlando Personal Injury Cases

Defendants in personal injury cases can vary widely. Identifying the proper defendant will depend on the facts and nature of your case. 

Examples of defendants include:

  • Individuals: An individual may be a defendant. For example, the defendant may be a driver who was speeding or driving under the influence, causing a car accident and injuries.
  • Businesses: A business may be a defendant. For example, a business may be responsible for injuries if you slip and fall due to unsafe conditions, such as wet floors, that the business has a duty to maintain.
  • Manufacturers: A manufacturer may be a defendant. For example, a manufacturer may be liable for injuries caused by defective products that injure you or a loved one.
  • Government Entities: A local government may be a defendant. In cases involving accidents on public roads or property due to poor maintenance or design, the City of Orlando may be a defendant.
  • Employers: An employer may be a defendant. For example, an employer may be liable for injuries caused by failing to provide a safe working environment.

Our Orlando personal injury lawyers will fight to hold all potential defendants responsible in your case. 

The Role of Defendants in Orlando Personal Injury Cases

It is not enough for you to allege a defendant is responsible for your injuries. You will need to prove it. While doing so, a defendant has many roles that will shape the outcome of your Orlando personal injury case. 

The role of the defendant may include the following:

  • Responding to your complaint: Your complaint will outline your theory of liability against a defendant. The defendant will then respond with an answer and plead defenses or counterclaims against you.
  • Participating in discovery: Defendants participate in the discovery process, where both sides exchange documents and evidence related to the case.
  • Conducting negotiations: Many personal injury cases are settled out of court. Defendants, often through their insurers or attorneys, may negotiate with you to attempt to resolve a case with a settlement to avoid the uncertainty of trial.
  • Attending trial: A defendant will likely present their case if it goes to trial. They will challenge your evidence and even call their own witnesses before the judge or jury.

Defendants play a key role in personal injury cases. Their actions may significantly impact your case and its outcome. 

Consult an Orlando Personal Injury Lawyer for Help Dealing with Defendants

If you are a potential plaintiff, it is advisable to consult with a personal injury lawyer to understand your rights and the role of a defendant. An Orlando injury lawyer at Payer Law Personal Injury Lawyers can help you identify potential defendants in your case and gather evidence to prove their negligence and liability in court. Contact us today at (407) 648-1510.