Filing a Lawsuit in Hot Springs, Arkansas
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If you're considering filing a lawsuit, there are many 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 Hot Springs, Arkansas civil litigation attorney first.
Once you have hired an attorney in Hot Springs, 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 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 Hot Springs, Arkansas
Consultation with your attorney: Before you continue in any legal action in Hot Springs, Arkansas, you should speak with a brilliant local attorney in Hot Springs, Arkansas. Your legal counsel can make sure you have the best possible chance of winning your case, and help you decide if you should file your lawsuit in the first place.
Drafting the complaint: In Hot Springs, Arkansas, once you have decided to file a lawsuit, the first thing you normally 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 normally 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 usually 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: 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 Hot Springs, Arkansas 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, typically 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 Hot Springs, Arkansas, the defendant has time to respond. They normally 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 show 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 Hot Springs, Arkansas.
Accordingly, it's always a good idea to speak with a Hot Springs, Arkansas litigation attorney if you are contemplating filing a lawsuit against a person or company.