Filing a Lawsuit in Ontario, California
If you live in
If you think that you may want to file a lawsuit, you should not make this decision lightly, and there are a lot of factors that need to be taken into account. Obviously, you should never go into a lawsuit without at least consulting a knowledgeable Ontario, California civil litigation attorney.
Once you have hired an attorney in Ontario, California, 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 Ontario, California
Consultation With Your Attorney: Before filing any lawsuit in Ontario, California, you should speak with a local attorney. Your Ontario, California attorney will be able to advise you on the merits of your lawsuit, and your chances of success.
Drafting The Complaint: Once you decide that pursuing a lawsuit in Ontario, California 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 process, 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 typically asks the court for specific relief, should it rule in the plaintiff's favor.
Serving The Defendant: Once you and your attorney have written a good complaint, and filed it with the court, it needs to be served on the defendant within a specific period of time. This is required under the law of Ontario, California to ensure that the defendant actually knows that he's being sued, and has time to find a lawyer and prepare a defense. Generally, the defendant should be served in person. However, when this isn't possible, service by mail is also acceptable in a few instances.
Await Defendant's Response: In Ontario, California, 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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This article gives you a basic picture of what is required to file a lawsuit in Ontario, California. However, it should not, under any circumstances, be read as a complete guide to the litigation process.
Therefore, if you want to file a lawsuit against someone in Ontario, California, 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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Life in OntarioOntario, California is a city in San Bernardino County. Its current population is about 170,000 people.
For thousands of years, the area now known as Ontario was a hunting and foraging ground for the semi-nomadic Tongva band of Native Americans. People of European descent arrived when Mexican settlers began populating the area.
Ontario's early economic growth was fueled by agriculture, and tourism by wealthy Californians, who viewed the area as a health resort, and it is still a destination for people who enjoy a warm, dry climate, either for recreation or retirement.
During and after World War Two, Ontario, and many other suburbs, experienced a housing boom, thanks to the explosion of industrial activity, which significantly increased the population. Modernly, there is still some manufacturing activity in Ontario, California, which is an important part of its economy.
Owing to its diversity and relatively large population, a thriving legal community has sprung up in Ontario. Ontario, California lawyers are as diverse as the community itself, and virtually every imaginable practice area is represented. If you need legal advice or representation, an Ontario, California lawyer is a good person to ask.