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plaintiff

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noun plain·tiff \ˈplān-təf\

Simple Definition of plaintiff

  • law : a person who sues another person or accuses another person of a crime in a court of law

Source: Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary

Full Definition of plaintiff

  1. :  a person who brings a legal action — compare defendant

Examples of plaintiff in a sentence

  1. <the judge ruled that the plaintiff's lawsuit was groundless, and he dismissed it>



Did You Know?

We won't complain about the origins of plaintiff, although complain and plaintiff are distantly related; both can be traced back to plangere, a Latin word meaning "to strike, beat one's breast, or lament." Plaintiff comes most immediately from Middle English plaintif, itself an Anglo-French borrowing tracing back to plaint, meaning "lamentation." (The English word plaintive is also related.) Logically enough, plaintiff applies to the one who does the complaining in a legal case.

Origin and Etymology of plaintiff

Middle English plaintif, from Anglo-French, from pleintif, adjective


First Known Use: 14th century


Law Dictionary

plaintiff

play
noun plain·tiff \ˈplān-təf\

Legal Definition of plaintiff

  1. :  the party who institutes a legal action or claim (as a counterclaim) — see also complainant, complaint, libellant — compare defendant, prosecution



Origin and Etymology of plaintiff

Middle French plaintif, from plaintif, adj., grieving, from plaint lamentation, from Latin planctus, from plangere to strike, beat one's breast, lament



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