Can You Sue a Corporation in New Mexico?

Corporations are legal entities under the law. They can own property in the corporate name and transact business in the corporate name. Likewise, the corporation can be sued.

Corporations are sued every day, and for many reasons. Examples of reasons corporations are sued in New Mexico include, but are not limited to:

  • The company misled consumers about a product’s safety
  • An employee was illegally terminated or harassed
  • The company breached a warranty or contract
  • A corporation sold a defective product that caused someone to be injured
  • A company employee negligently injured someone
  • The company failed to maintain safe working conditions
  • A company failed to provide safe premises for invitees and guests

Suing a corporation in New Mexico can be daunting for the average citizen. However, hiring an experienced Albuquerque personal injury attorney to take up the fight for you increases your chance of winning when you sue a corporation in New Mexico.

Challenges of Suing Corporations in New Mexico

Challenges of Suing Corporations in New Mexico

An individual can sue a corporation for negligence, strict liability, vicarious liability, breach of warranty, and other personal injury causes of action. However, each lawsuit is unique.

Therefore, suing a corporation can present unique challenges based on the facts of the case. Some common problems you might encounter when suing a corporation include:

Corporations have huge legal departments and teams of professionals to defend against lawsuits. They also have significant resources to investigate claims, hire expert witnesses, and cause delays after delays to drag a lawsuit out for years. You would need a legal team with the resources and skills to take on a giant opponent.

The Company’s Structure

The challenge is to determine the correct process for suing a corporation. The business structure could impact whether you name the company, the owners, or both.

A corporation provides some protection from liability for its owners. However, depending on the facts of the case, you might have grounds to “pierce the corporate veil.” An enormous amount of research must be conducted before filing a lawsuit against a corporation.

Suing a Corporation Requires a Lot of Paperwork

Complaints for lawsuits against corporations could be hundreds of pages long, depending on the case. When you sue a corporation, you will likely face an avalanche of paper as the corporation tries to wear you down and/or bury crucial information in thousands of documents.

You may also be required to provide substantial documentation to the corporation during the lawsuit’s discovery phase. It could take a team of legal professionals weeks or months to gather the information to respond to discovery requests.

Dealing With Corporate Tactics

When you sue a corporation in New Mexico, be prepared for an onslaught of corporate tactics intended to frighten, intimidate, and delay court action. Common tactics corporations use to fight lawsuits include challenging the legal basis of the claim, fighting jurisdiction, alleging contributory fault, or questioning the plaintiff’s legal standing. 

Each tactic is designed to delay litigation and wear down the plaintiff so they give in and accept a low settlement offer.

Filing a Class Action Lawsuit Against a Corporation

A corporation may cause injury to one person, which could result in a lawsuit by a single plaintiff. However, a corporation’s wrongdoing often impacts hundreds or thousands of people.

For example, a company produces and sells a defective product that injures thousands of consumers. In that case, a class action lawsuit might be filed against the corporation. A class action lawsuit has one or more plaintiffs who file the lawsuit on behalf of an entire “class” of individuals. The class represents all parties who suffered harm from the same wrongdoing by the defendant.

Class action lawsuits bind all members of the class to the decision in the main case. However, members may opt out in some cases to file individual claims, but they must do so by a deadline. Also, if they opt out, they must pay their own legal fees, which can be expensive in these types of claims.

Multi-District Litigation Against Corporations in New Mexico

Sometimes, thousands of people sue a corporation because of the same issue. For example, a company exposed people to a harmful chemical that is known to cause cancer. People diagnosed with that specific cancer after being exposed to the product filed a lawsuit. The result is thousands of lawsuits across the country alleging the same facts.

The courts may consolidate the cases into a multi-district litigation (MDL). The MDL is administered by a judge in a federal district court. All cases are combined for the discovery and pre-trial phase. The goal is to reduce the time and cost for all parties and the court by allowing the parties in different cases to work together to accomplish the steps that would be the same in each case.

Unlike a class action lawsuit, MDLs do not combine the individual lawsuits into one massive lawsuit. Each lawsuit against the corporation remains separate and is tried on its own merits.

Typically, the court chooses a few cases, known as bellwether cases, to go to trial. The outcomes of the bellwether cases can give parties an idea of how juries might rule in future cases. The bellwether cases may encourage the parties in the other cases to settle their claims before going to trial.

What Should I Do if I Need To Sue a Corporation in New Mexico for a Personal Injury?

The first step is to seek legal advice from an experienced Albuquerque personal injury lawyer. An attorney investigates your claim to determine how you were injured and if the corporation could be liable for your economic and non-economic damages.

Before you sue a corporation for a personal injury claim, you must have a valid cause of action (reason to sue) and damages. You must also have sufficient evidence to prove the legal elements of your cause of action.

For example, if you are suing a corporation for negligence, you must prove the corporation owed you a duty of care and breached the duty of care. Then, you must prove that the breach of duty caused your injuries and damages.

If you sue a corporation claiming vicarious liability, you must prove that an employee caused your injury. For example, you might sue a trucking company because a negligent truck driver caused a truck accident. You must prove that the truck driver’s negligence caused the crash and that the trucking company exercised control over the driver because of their employment.

Suing a corporation is possible. However, you don’t want to tackle it alone, or the company might bury you in paperwork and legal tactics to force you to give up your claim.

Get Help Suing a Corporation in Albuquerque, New Mexico

Our Albuquerque personal injury lawyers at Curiel & Runion are equipped to handle the most complex personal injury cases. We have the resources and expertise to go up against large corporations and win. If a corporation’s wrongdoing injured you or a family member, let’s discuss your legal options during a free consultation.