Filing a Lawsuit in Phenix City, Alabama
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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 Phenix City, Alabama civil litigation attorney first.
Once you have hired an attorney in Phenix City, 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 Phenix City, Alabama
Consultation With Your Attorney: Before filing any lawsuit in Phenix City, Alabama, you should speak with a local attorney. Your Phenix City, Alabama attorney will be able to advise you on the merits of your lawsuit, and your chances of success.
Drafting The Complaint: In Phenix City, Alabama, the first step to filing a lawsuit, once you've actually decided to do so (in consultation with your attorney), is writing a complaint. A complaint is simply a list of facts that you allege against the defendant. A court must look at these allegations and determine if they add up to a valid cause of action, assuming they're true. If they do not add up to a cause of action, the case may be dismissed. The complaint also typically ask the court to provide specific relief, should it rule in the plaintiff's favor.
Serving The Defendant: After you draft your complaint, and file it with the court, you have to let the defendant know that they're being sued. The law of Phenix City, Alabama requires that the defendant be given advance notice of the lawsuit as a matter of basic fairness: if you were being sued, you'd want to be given time to find a lawyer and prepare your defense strategy, right? So, with that in mind, the law prefers that defendants be served personally, usually through the use of a paid process server.
Awaiting the Defendant's Response: Once a lawsuit has been filed, and the defendant has been served in Phenix City, Alabama, the defendant has time to respond. They typically do so by drafting an answer to the complaint, in which they deny the plaintiff's allegations, or assert a legal defense. If the defendant fails to respond within a set period of time, they will be in default, and you may be able to get a "default judgment" against them, in which all of your allegations against the defendant are treated as if the defendant admitted them, and you only need to establish that you've suffered losses that warrant the damages you're asking for.
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The basic outline above does not come close to covering all the details involved in filing a lawsuit in Phenix City, Alabama.
Therefore, it is crucial that you consult a qualified civil litigation attorney before you file any type of lawsuit in Phenix City, Alabama.