Filing a Lawsuit in Siloam 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 Siloam Springs, Arkansas civil litigation attorney first.
When you hire a civil litigation lawyer in Siloam Springs, Arkansas, they'll be able to give you some very useful advice, particularly in devising a strategy that maximizes your chances of winning your lawsuit. You'll probably also wonder how much this lawsuit is going to cost you, especially if you don't win. This largely depends on the attorney's fee structure. If the attorney charges an hourly rate, you will simply have to pay the lawyer for every hour they work. This can add up to a huge amount of money, very quickly. If they charge on a contingency basis, you do not have to pay any attorney's fees unless you win, and payment comes in the form of the percentage of the judgment. However, if you lose, you might still be responsible for costs, such as court fees, which are incurred no matter what happens to the case.
Steps for Filing a Lawsuit in Siloam Springs, Arkansas
Consultation With Your Attorney: Before filing any lawsuit in Siloam Springs, Arkansas, you should speak with a local attorney. Your Siloam Springs, Arkansas attorney will be able to advise you on the merits of your lawsuit, and your chances of success.
Drafting a Complaint: Once you have decided to go through with filing a lawsuit in a Siloam Springs, Arkansas court, you need to draft a complaint, with the help of your lawyer. A complaint is typically the first step in actually filing a lawsuit. The complaint is the plaintiff's first opportunity to lay out the allegations against the defendant. If a complaint doesn't allege facts that add up to a valid lawsuit (that is, even if everything alleged in the complaint is true, the defendant has still not committed a legal wrong that the court can compensate), the case will have to be dismissed. When a case is dismissed for this reason, the court typically gives the plaintiff a chance to re-submit the complaint, with the errors corrected.
Serving The Defendant: Once you have drafted your complaint, you need to serve the defendant with it, and file it with the court. Siloam Springs, Arkansas requires that lawsuits be served on defendants in a specific way. This is to ensure that the defendant has a good deal of notice that they're being sued, giving them time to find an attorney, and work on how they're going to defend themselves. It is strongly preferred to serve defendants in person (with a disinterested third party delivering the papers to the defendant). Sometimes, however, the defendant cannot be found, or is trying to avoid service, they can be served by mail with court approval.
Awaiting the Defendant's Response: Once a lawsuit has been filed, and the defendant has been served in Siloam Springs, Arkansas, 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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As you can see, it can be a intricate and difficult process to file a lawsuit in Siloam Springs, Arkansas, and it is, in fact, much more intricate than the basic outline you just read.
Therefore, it is imperative that you consult a qualified civil litigation attorney before you file any type of lawsuit in Siloam Springs, Arkansas.