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Not everyone can initiate a lawsuit. In fact, in order to initiate a lawsuit you must have legal standing. In short, you need to figure out if you have the right to file a lawsuit against the person or business. This is done by first determining if you have been directly affected by the legal dispute you are bringing against them.

For example, if you were injured in a car collision where a negligent person ran a red light, you would have legal standing to bring a lawsuit against them because you actually suffered an injury in the collision. You may also have legal standing, even if you are not the person that was directly injured, if you are a caretaker who is suing on behalf of a child or mentally disabled adult.

Finally, you must have legal capacity to be a party to a lawsuit. Some persons that are considered to not have legal capacity to initiate a lawsuit include children under the age of 18 and persons that the court finds mentally incompetent because of an illness, age, or disability.