Litigation Lawyers in Saratoga
If you live in , California, and believe that you have suffered some type of legal wrong, you may wish to file a lawsuit against the person who allegedly wronged you.
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 qualified Saratoga, California civil litigation attorney.
Once you have hired an attorney in Saratoga, 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 Saratoga, California
Consultation with your attorney: Before you file a lawsuit in a Saratoga, California court, you need to meet and confer with a local lawyer. You lawyer in Saratoga, California can advise you on whether or not your lawsuit has merit, and how likely it is to succeed.
Drafting The Complaint: Once you decide that pursuing a lawsuit in Saratoga, 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 usually asks the court for 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 Saratoga, California 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, generally through the use of a paid process server.
Await Defendant's Response: When you have served the defendant with the complaint in Saratoga, California, the defendant has time to respond. The most common response is known as an "answer," in which they specifically address the factual allegations you've made against them, usually by denying most of the allegations. They might also move to dismiss the case if they can argue that the complaint is legally flawed. A judge then has to rule on this motion. If the defendant doesn't respond within a certain period of time, they are said to have "defaulted." This allows the court to enter a default judgment, in which the plaintiff essentially automatically wins the lawsuit. Once this happens, the defendant, if they're ever located, can be served with the judgment, and will have very little power to challenge the merits of your case.
How Can A Saratoga, California Tort Lawyer Help?
The basic outline above does not come close to covering all the details involved in filing a lawsuit in Saratoga, California.
Therefore, if you want to file a lawsuit against someone in Saratoga, California, you should not hesitate to speak with an attorney, who will be able to advise you on the best way to proceed.