In US law, one party can bring a lawsuit against another party in court. In civil cases, the party bringing the suit—called the plaintiff—generally claims to have incurred loss through actions of the other party—the defendant. In criminal cases, the state—whose legal representative is called ‘the prosecution’—charges the defendant with breaking the law. The court decides the case; judgement may include remedy of the loss and damages in civil cases, or sentencing in criminal cases, plus injunctions to force action and other legal consequences. The overall conduct of a lawsuit is called ‘litigation.’ The parties on both sides are generically ‘litigants,’ and the attorneys who represent them are ‘litigators.’
In the context of owning a house, a lawsuit could occur if a person or other entity tries to claim ownership of the title from the current owner, such as an unknown heir of the previous owner. If the defendant has title insurance, their title company will defend litigation in which their policyholder’s claim to the title is challenged and cover the attorneys’ fees, court costs and related expenses.
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In case you missed it, check out our last Title Junction post: FSBO Safeguards Provided by Title Companies