March 1, 2023
Indeed, we live in a litigious society. That being said, just because you're angry or unhappy doesn't mean that the law will reward you with damages. Similarly, just because you feel wronged by the party that you have sued, doesn't mean that the Court will provide you with a trial. In some cases, notwithstanding how upset a Plaintiff may be, there is no "right of action" provided under law to sue the perceived wrongdoer. Making matters even more infuriating for those confronted with such an obstacle, the law also protects some parties from lawsuit pursuant to the doctrine of "absolute immunity." In essence, not only is the Court's door barred to you, but even if you forced your way in, you're not going to be able to sue the proposed Defendant. Such is often the barrier encountered by public customers and industry participants when they try to sue Wall Street's self-regulatory-organization FINRA, as set out in a recent federal lawsuit.
The Federal Rules of Civil Procedure allow a District Court judge to dismiss a case after finding that a party had failed to carry its burden of proof to the extent that no reasonable jury could possibly find in that party's favor. In a recent insider trading case, the trial judge found that the SEC came to court with lots of allegations but not so much proof; and, accordingly, he dismissed the case. On appeal, a Circuit Court thought that a jury could have muddled through the SEC's allegations.
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