This section is from the book "Cyclopedia Of Architecture, Carpentry, And Building", by James C. et al. Also available from Amazon: Cyclopedia Of Architecture, Carpentry And Building.
In regard to resort to the courts it is to be borne in mind that it is necessary not only to have a just case, but also to prove it. This proof may be before a jury if either side so chooses, and a little reflection will show the element of uncertainty which is thus introduced into any litigated dispute. Moreover the matter of proving one's case is much affected by the rules of evidence, rules sometimes arbitrary in their nature, and largely the result of practical considerations involved in the use of the jury system. From these it may result that matters which have some weight in ordinary discussion, are not allowed to reach the ears of a jury. Thus hearsay, or what one person knows only by the word of another, is generally excluded, although it might have a certain limited value as proof. Another practical consideration in a question of bringing suit arises in the difference in the laws of different states. It may happen that a person's chances of success in a suit depend upon the place where his action may be brought. The delay necessarily incident to legal proceedings, a delay especially trying in the large cities, is also to be considered. From these few considerations alone it appears that the question of advisability of bringing suit, or of peaceful compromise, may be a complicated one. On the other hand, by no means every suit that is begun is settled by trial in court. A lawsuit may be an excellent means of bringing an obstinate or grasping person to reason.