© D.L. Crumbley
Major Ways to Sue
Two major methods are 1) by ambush, and 2) by serve and volley.
With the ambush, we would prepare the skeletal framework of our allegation, run to the courthouse, file the suit, leak it to the press, and hope we could prove what we thought we knew. The advantage was surprise, and embarrassment for the defendants, and, hopefully, public opinion. The downside was the legal equivalent of jumping off a cliff with the strong, but unconfirmed, belief that there was a net down there somewhere.
The serve and volley would begin with a letter to the defendants, in which we made the same allegations, but rather than sue we would invite them to discuss the matter. The letters would go back and forth with each side generally able to predict what the other might do. If liability could be proved, then a quiet settlement would probably occur. Litigation could be avoided.
Source: John Grisham, The Street Lawyer, New York: Bantam Dell, 1998, p. 274