I’m going to explain confusing and counter intuitive legalese by explaining the meaning of case dismissed “with prejudice” versus “without prejudice.” These are the formal legal terms for the different ways cases can be disposed of. Dismissing a case “with prejudice” sounds like it got dismissed because a judge’s bias or racism, but that’s not what it means. Not even close.
A court case that is dismissed with prejudice means that it is dismissed permanently. A case dismissed with prejudice is over and done with, once and for all, and can’t be brought back to court to argue the same dispute again. A case dismissed without prejudice means the opposite. It’s not dismissed forever. That cause of action can be re-filed with the court. When a lawsuit is dismissed without prejudice it signifies that none of the rights or privileges of the individual involved are considered to be lost or waived. The inclusion of the term without prejudice reflects the absence of a decision on the merits and leaves the parties free to litigate the matter in a subsequent action. Folks, the modern world of law is just too complex for the average guy or gal to understand. Unscrupulous lawyers and judges know this, and they can and do use your ignorance to take advantage of you. Knowledge is power, forewarned is forearmed.
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