Filing a Lawsuit in Opelika, Alabama

File a Lawsuit in Opelika, AL

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If you live in , Alabama, and believe that you have suffered some type of legal wrong, you may wish to file a lawsuit against the person who allegedly wronged you.

If you're considering filing a lawsuit, there are numerous things you need to consider, and it is not a decision to be made lightly. You should not file a lawsuit without seeking the advice of a Opelika, Alabama civil litigation attorney first.

Once you have hired an attorney in Opelika, Alabama, he or she will be able to help you devise a strategy on how to proceed, which will hopefully maximize your chances of success in your lawsuit. Your lawyer can also give you a rough idea of how much the lawsuit is likely to cost, taking into account court fees, expert witness fees, and other costs.

Steps for Filing a Lawsuit in Opelika, Alabama

Consultation With Your Attorney: Before filing any lawsuit in Opelika, Alabama, you should speak with a local attorney. Your Opelika, Alabama attorney will be able to advise you on the merits of your lawsuit, and your chances of success.

Drafting the complaint: In Opelika, Alabama, once you have decided to file a lawsuit, the first thing you typically have to do is draft a complaint. The complaint is a document that contains all of the allegations you're making against the defendant (the person whom you are suing). It typically must allege all of the facts necessary to constitute a cause of action, though in some systems, very few facts are strictly required to be alleged. It also normally has, at the end, a "prayer" (request) for relief. This final section tells the court what type of relief the plaintiff wants, should the court rule in the plaintiff's favor.

Serving the Defendant: When you have decided that you want to file a lawsuit in Opelika, Alabama, and have drafted the complaint, your next major step is to file the complaint with the court, and serve it on the defendant. The defendant must be given at least several weeks' notice that they're being sued, and as much time to review the complaint. This is a matter of basic fairness and due process, and allows the defendant to hire a lawyer and get to work on a defense. The law requires that the defendant be served in a few particular ways. The first choice is to give it to them in person. This has to be done by a person who does not have any direct involvement in the lawsuit. If that isn't possible, the defendant can be served by giving the complaint to another adult member of their household; this is called substituted service.

Await Defendant's Response: In Opelika, Alabama, the law gives civil defendants a fairly long period of time (a month or two typically) to respond to a lawsuit against them. The most prevalent response is either an answer (where they address the factual allegations against them, typically denying most or all of the allegations) or a motion to dismiss (where the contend that, even if everything alleged in the complaint is true, those facts would not establish liability). If the defendant does nothing, and fails to respond, they run the risk of having a default judgment entered against them. This typically means that the court automatically rules against them, treating the plaintiff as if they won the lawsuit. This gives the plaintiff a judgment against the defendant, which they can seek to collect using all legal means.

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The basic outline above does not come close to covering all the details involved in filing a lawsuit in Opelika, Alabama.

Therefore, if you want to file a lawsuit against someone in Opelika, Alabama, you should not hesitate to speak with an attorney, who will be able to advise you on the best way to proceed.

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