Dudley DeBosier Legal Glossary

Accidental Death

Accidental death occurs when the death of an individual is ruled to be the result of an accident and not the result of natural causes, murder, or suicide.

Accidental Death and Dismemberment Insurance

This is a policy or provision in an insurance policy that pays a specified amount or a multiple of the weekly disability benefit should the insured die, lose sight, or lose two limbs as the result of an accident. A lesser amount is payable for the loss of one eye, arm, leg, hand, or foot.

Accidental Death Insurance

A form of insurance intended to pay the beneficiary a lump sum in the event the insured dies as the result of an accident.


Traditional bankruptcy laws changed in October 2005, requiring people who can make some payments toward their debts to pay them, while still affording them the right to have the rest of their debts erased.

Brain Injury Lawyer

These attorneys represent individuals who suffered accident injuries resulting in brain trauma. Brain injuries can result from the negligent actions or carelessness of others and are often life altering. Adverse physical conditions can be caused by brain injuries, including speech and language difficulties, such as slurring or the inability to complete sentences; balance issues and difficulty walking or moving; or the inability to function independently of others.

Civil Action

A term used to describe court cases that are not criminal; lawsuits involving private parties or governments usually fall under the category of a civil action. Cases involving plaintiffs’ attorneys are generally civil actions.

Criminal Action

These cases are brought by the government against an individual or group of individuals for offenses to the public; a criminal action often results in a criminal trial.

Disability Insurance Benefits

Arguably the most important Social Security Disability benefit, Disability Insurance Benefits go to individuals who have recent work history (usually they must be able to document working five out of the last 10 years) and are disabled. Benefits are then paid based upon a Social Security earning history regardless of the individual’s income or financial situation.

Implantable Cardiac Defibrillators (ICDs)

Implantable cardiac defibrillators (ICDs) regulate the beating of the heart. ICDs deal with ventricular tachycardia and fibrillation—when the heart beats so fast that blood is not pumped throughout the body—and deliver an electric shock directly to the heart if it begins to beat dangerously fast. This condition also can lead to cardiac arrest and death.

Injury Lawyer

See Personal Injury Lawyer.

Life Insurance (also known as Life Assurance)

Life insurance policies provide for a payment upon the death of the insured, and can be used as a means of investment or savings.

Off-Label Prescriptions

Off-label use of a drug is when a drug is prescribed for uses that have not been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Doctors can legally prescribe drugs for off-label uses, based upon their own experiences or the studies of other doctors. This practice has been used for years, often with a high degree of effectiveness. However, it’s illegal for pharmaceutical companies to promote drugs for off-label uses.

Personal Injury Attorney

See Personal Injury Lawyer.

Personal Injury Lawyer

Personal injury lawyers protect the rights of people who have suffered as the result of a host of grievances, including: auto accident, aviation accident, birth injury, cerebral palsy, brain injury, building design defects, class action/mass torts, drug injury, defective medical device, defective product, drunk driving injury, fire and burn injury, highway design defect, motorcycle accident, nursing home abuse, premises liability, truck accident, workers’ compensation, and wrongful death.

Pharmaceutical Injury

Prescription drugs can cause harmful, permanent, and sometimes deadly side effects despite being approved for use by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Some prescription drugs have been known to cause side effects such as an increased risk of heart attack or stroke, bleeding events, or even birth defects.


The plaintiff is the person or group of people who brings a lawsuit against another person or organization. In personal injury cases, the injured person is the plaintiff and the party he or she is seeking damages from is the defendant. If the plaintiff’s case is successful, damages are usually awarded in the form of money.

Plaintiffs’ Attorney

A plaintiffs’ attorney represents the legal interests of a party bringing a lawsuit against a defendant or group of defendants for damages.

Sexual Harassment

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission defines sexual harassment as unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature. These actions constitute sexual harassment when the conduct explicitly or implicitly affects an individual’s employment, unreasonably interferes with an individual’s work performance, or creates an intimidating, hostile, or offensive work environment.

Social Security Disability (SSD)

Social Security Disability (SSD) is an insurance system designed to help with financial hardships throughout one’s life, not just after retirement. If an individual is unable to work due to a disease or injury, he or she may be eligible for SSD benefits regardless of age. Having the help of a Social Security Disability attorney can increase the chances of having a claim approved—even after an initial claim is denied.

Social Security Disability Attorney

See Social Security Disability Lawyer.

Social Security Disability Fraud

This form of fraud occurs when an individual dishonestly makes a claim for Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits but is not disabled. SSD fraud is illegal and detrimental to the Social Security system. If you know of anyone committing Social Security fraud, report it to the Social Security Administration.

Social Security Disability Insurance

Social Security Disability Insurance is based on an individual’s inability to work. If a person cannot perform work he or she previously was able to and cannot adjust to other work because of the acquired medical condition(s), he or she may be eligible for Social Security Disability Insurance.

Social Security Disability Lawyer

Social Security Disability lawyers work to help people who cannot work due to injuries or illnesses receive Social Security Disability benefits—many times after their initial claims for benefits were denied.

Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitor (SSRI) Drugs

Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) are a class of antidepressant drugs on the market prescribed to treat depression in children and adults. SSRI drugs may be linked to an increased risk of birth defects when used by pregnant women.

Supplemental Security Income (SSI)

Supplemental Security Income benefits are reserved for disabled individuals of lower socioeconomic status; wealthier individuals do not qualify for SSI benefits.


This is a lawsuit brought by a plaintiff claiming damages for a wrong done to the plaintiff, regardless of whether or not the grievance was intentional or accidental. A common example of a tort lawsuit is one seeking damages for injuries sustained in an auto accident or truck accident.

Wrongful Death

Wrongful death occurs when the negligent or malicious act of an individual a group of individuals results in death. Wrongful death lawsuits allege that the death in question was attributable to the willful or negligent act of another.