20 May 2021

Difference between plaintiff, defendant, petitioner, respondent, applicant, accused, complainant, appellant, decree holder, Judgment debtor.

What is the difference between plaintiff, defendant, petitioner, respondent, applicant, accused, complainant, appellant, decree holder, Judgment debtor.

 

In Indian courts, the words plaintiff, defendant, petitioner, respondent, applicant, accused, complainant, appellant, decree holder, Judgment debtor depict the parties involved in a legal proceedings.

The terms plaintiff, petitioner, applicant, decree holder and appellant are of equal or similar categories as they describe and represent the first party in civil proceedings but they differ slightly in the way of application and type of case.

Similarly the terms defendant, respondent, accused, judgment debtor are of similar categories as they describe and represent the second party in civil proceedings but these terms are also differ slightly in the way of application and nature of case.


Who is Plaintiff ?

Plaintiff is a person who initiates an action against opposite party in a civil case. For illustration purpose if you file a suit for permanent injunction against opposite party then you will be considered plaintiff. In simple word the person who institute a plaint in the court is known as the plaintiff or if the persons filing the plaint are more than one then they are known as plaintiffs.

 

Who is Defendant ?

Defendant is a person against whom the plaintiff files a legal proceeding or civil suit. In simple words the opposite party is called defendant or defendants.

 

Who is petitioner ?

Petitioner is a person or individual who files a petition in court. A petition is simply a writ filed in court. The petitioner invokes the help of a court to redress his grievances. For example in case of public interest we file a writ petition before a competent court. 

 

Who is respondent

The respondent is a party or person against whom a petition is filed or we can say the other party to a petition is called respondent. This respondent term is used in cases like Petition under section 125 CrPC, Section 8 of Hindu marriage Act, Divorce petitions etc.

 

Who is applicant ?

The term applicant is used when a person or individual files his plea by moving an application before a forum or court. In this case, the first party is called applicant and against whom we files the application is called respondent. Or in other word in an application the filer of the same is known as the applicant or applicants and the other party against whom the same is filed is known as respondent or respondents as the case may be.

 

Who is accused ?

The accused is the person charged with an offence. The term accused is preliminary used in criminal cases or in complaint cases such as 138 N.I Act, in bail applications, in cased filed by the State.

 

Who is complainant ?

The complainant is the person who files a complaint against a person. The complainant is also described as applicant. The opposite party in a complaint is called accused or respondent. The complainant term used in cases such as 138 N.I Act, D.V Act etc.

 

Who is appellant ?

Appellant is a person or individual who appeals to a higher court in a case which has already settled the dispute. When the party against whom a decision is announced, if he is not satisfied by the decision he can further file an appeal in higher court with a expectation to get the decision of lower court set aside. The opposite party in an appeal is known as respondent.

 

Who is decree holder ?

The decree holder is a person or individual in whose favour a decree has been passed by a court. The opposite party to the decree holder is known as Judgment debtor.

 

Who is Judgment Debtor ?

The judgment debtor is a person or individual against whom a judgment has been passed by the court and he is ordered to pay money or debt or damages to another person. The   term decree holder and judgment debtor is used in execution petitions filed before courts.  

 

In legal Proceedings the parties are described as under :-

In Civil Suit

Plaintiff                Vs

Defendant

In Petitions including Writ petitions

Petitioner           Vs

Respondent

In Criminal Proceedings

   Complainant        Vs

 Accused

In Executions

  Decree holder      Vs

Judgment Debtor

In Appeal

   Appellant             Vs

 Respondent

 

 

 

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