Can I sue someone?

By: Sach Oliver, Trial Attorney/Managing Partner

Have you ever considered legal remedies for the problems life throws at you? If you have, then you need to understand what “standing” means under the law. Standing is the term for the legal method of deciding who can and who cannot bring a claim to court. It is a threshold issue any and every lawsuit must overcome.

The basic question every litigant must answer is if they have been injured or if they have been prejudiced as a member of a class of persons regulated by the law in question. The first prong of the question is straightforward; if you have an actual injury you can point to then you have standing. Some common examples of this would be a rear-end collision, a medical malpractice claim or a worksite accident. There are many more that could be listed but the idea is that in all of the examples there is an actual physical harm that has been done that can be examined so as to determine who is at fault for that injury.

The trickier part of standing is determining if you are a member of a class of persons regulated by the law and you are prejudiced because of it. Just this last May there was an Arkansas Court of Appeals case where the plaintiff failed to prove this kind of standing. The plaintiff attempted to argue that another individual’s parental rights were being violated because of the lower court’s interpretation of the statute at issue. The court found that she was not claiming injury to herself and that she was not among the class of individuals that was the target of the statute she was challenging. This meant that she simply did not have standing and therefore could not win her case on the substantive legal issues. This case is a great example of why standing is such an important topic to understand. In that case, the problem was not necessarily that the plaintiff was incorrect about the law, it was that she was not the right person to be arguing it before the court.

Establishing standing is something that everyone seeking legal remedies will have to overcome. It can be a simple or problematic issue, and it is always a good idea to seek the advice of an attorney when you are considering a possible lawsuit. At Bailey & Oliver Law Firm we have years of experience litigating complex cases and representing clients who have suffered from personal injuries. With our representation, you can rest assured that we will go the extra mile to provide you the legal help you deserve. Our office is located just West of Exit 81 on I-49 in Rogers, Arkansas.  Give us a call at 479-202-5200.

We serve Rogers, Bentonville, Springdale, Lowell, Bella Vista, Centerton, Decatur, Highfill, Cave Springs, Gravette, Pea Ridge, Fayetteville, Huntsville, Berryville, Eureka Springs and all of Arkansas.

Bailey & Oliver Law Firm.  Real. Good. Lawyers

3606 W. Southern Hills Blvd., Ste. 200, Rogers, AR  72758