Filing a Lawsuit in Dardanelle, Arkansas
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If you're contemplating filing a lawsuit, there are several 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 Dardanelle, Arkansas civil litigation attorney first.
Once you have retained an attorney in Dardanelle, Arkansas, 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 provide 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 Dardanelle, Arkansas
Consultation with your attorney: You should always speak with a Dardanelle, Arkansas lawyer who specializes in civil litigation before filing any type of lawsuit in a court in Dardanelle, Arkansas. Your lawyer will have essential information and advise, helping you decide whether or not your chances of success in the lawsuit make it worth your while to proceed.
Drafting The Complaint: Once you determine that pursuing a lawsuit in Dardanelle, Arkansas civil court is worth your time and effort, you need to file a complaint. The complaint can set the tone, and frame the issues, for the rest of the litigation procedure, which can drag on for months, or even years (and decades, in some cases). This is because the complaint lays out all the allegations against the defendant. It also usually asks the court for particular 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 Dardanelle, Arkansas states that the defendant be given advance notice of the lawsuit as a matter of general 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, generally 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 Dardanelle, Arkansas, the defendant has time to respond. They usually 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 viewed as if the defendant admitted them, and you only need to prove that you've suffered losses that warrant the damages you're asking for.
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As you can see, it can be a complicated and difficult process to file a lawsuit in Dardanelle, Arkansas, and it is, in fact, much more complicated than the basic outline you just read.
Thus, it is crucial that you consult a qualified civil litigation attorney before you file any type of lawsuit in Dardanelle, Arkansas.