Voluntary dismissal


Voluntary dismissal

Voluntary dismissal is when a law suit is terminated by request of the plaintiff (the party originally bringing the suit to court).

In the United States, voluntary dismissal in Federal court is subject to Rule 41(a) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. Rule 41(a)'s full text can be found below. Simply, Rule 41(a) allows the plaintiff to make a dismissal as long as the defendant has not yet taken any formal court action on the case (ie made a motion or filed an answer).

If the defendant has taken such action, dismissal is only proper under two circumstances:a. the defendant signs an agreement with the plaintiff to dismiss the caseb. the judge overseeing the case rules for the case to be dismissed

Once the case has been voluntarily dismissed, if it is brought to court again a dismissal in this second case will mean the case can never again be brought back to court.

If the defendant has a counterclaim, the case can only be dismissed if the counterclaim can still stand as its own case.

Full text of Rule 41 (a) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure:

(a) Voluntary Dismissal: Effect Thereof

(1) "By Plaintiff; By Stipulation." Subject to the prvisions of Rule 23(e), of Rule 66, and of any statute of the United States, an action may be dismissed by the plaintiff without order of court (i) by filing notice of dismissal at any time before service by the adverse party of an answer or of a motion for summary judgment, whichever first occurs, or (ii) by filing a stipulation of dismissal signed by all parties who have appeared in the action. Unless othersise stated in the notice of dismissal or stipulation, the dismissal is without prejudice, except that a notice of dismissal operaties as an adjudication upon the merits when filed by a plaintiff who has once dismissed in any court of the United States or of any state an action based on or including the same claim.

(2)"By Order of Court." Except as provided in paragraph (1) of this subdivision of this rule, an action shall not be dismissed at the plaintff's instance save upon order of the court and upon such terms and conditions as the court deems proper. If a counterclaim has been pleaded by a defendant prior to the service upon the defendant of the plaintiff's motion to dismiss, the action shall not be dismissed against the defendant's objections unless the counterclaim can remain pending for independent adjudication by the court. Unless otherwise specified in the order, a dismissal under this paragraph is without prejudice.

See also

*Involuntary dismissal.


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • voluntary dismissal — see dismissal Merriam Webster’s Dictionary of Law. Merriam Webster. 1996 …   Law dictionary

  • dismissal — dis·mis·sal n 1: removal from a position or service 2 a: the termination of an action or claim usu. before the presentation of evidence by the defendant in·vol·un·tary dismissal 1: the dismissal of an action by the court because of the plaintiff… …   Law dictionary

  • voluntary — vol·un·tary / vä lən ˌter ē/ adj 1 a: proceeding from one s own free choice or consent rather than as the result of duress, coercion, or deception a voluntary statement b: not compelled by law: done as a matter of choice or agreement voluntary… …   Law dictionary

  • voluntary — Unconstrained by interference; unimpelled by another s influence; spontaneous; acting of oneself. Coker v. State, 199 Ga. 20, 33 S.E.2d 171, 174. Done by design or intention. Proceeding from the free and unrestrained will of the person. Produced… …   Black's law dictionary

  • dismissal — An order or judgment finally disposing of an action, suit, motion, etc., without trial of the issues involved. Such may be either voluntary or involuntary. Fed.R. Civil P. 41. A release or discharge from employment. @ involuntary dismissal Under… …   Black's law dictionary

  • dismissal — An order or judgment finally disposing of an action, suit, motion, etc., without trial of the issues involved. Such may be either voluntary or involuntary. Fed.R. Civil P. 41. A release or discharge from employment. @ involuntary dismissal Under… …   Black's law dictionary

  • dismissal without prejudice — A voluntary dismissal of an action or proceeding without an adjudication of the cause that would prevent the bringing of a new action upon the same cause. 24 Am J2d Dism §§ 6 et seq. An order of dismissal of an action reciting that it is without… …   Ballentine's law dictionary

  • dismissal — An order for the termination of a case without a trial of any of its issues; a voluntary discontinuance by the plaintiff. 24 Am J2d Dism § 1. A judgment dismissing a cause as finally adjudicated against the plaintiff. The termination of a… …   Ballentine's law dictionary

  • Dismissal of U.S. attorneys controversy timeline — Dismissal of U.S. attorneys controversy (v · d · e …   Wikipedia

  • dismissal — the termination of a bankruptcy proceeding. The bankruptcy court can dismiss a case if it deems that the debtor or three creditors should not have filed or that a plan can never be formulated (Glossary of Common Bankruptcy Terms) An order… …   Glossary of Bankruptcy


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.