Litigation Lawyers in Urbandale
In Urbandale, Iowa, "civil procedure" refers to the varied processes and procedures that must be followed when conducting a civil lawsuit.
Urbandale, Iowa's government strives to make the civil justice system fair, efficient, and accessible. The rules of civil procedure are designed to advocate those goals, to the greatest extent possible.
Civil litigation, however, is inherently confusing. So, there is no getting around the fact that the civil procedure rules in Urbandale, Iowa are also going to be somewhat intricate and obtuse (or at least parts of them are). Remember, these rules govern every single thing that happens in a civil lawsuit, from the first complaint, to the last appeal.
Major Urbandale, Iowa Civil Procedure Issues
Complaint: The complaint is probably the most important document that the plaintiff will file in an Urbandale, Iowa lawsuit, and it is typically the first. The complaint contains all of the plaintiff's allegations against the defendant, as well as the relief that the plaintiff is asking the court to provide. Consequently, it can frame the tone, as well as the legal and factual issues, that will dominate the rest of the case.
Answer: The answer is a document filed by the defendant, in response to a complaint. The answer typically contains a few things: normally, it denies most of the allegations made by the plaintiff. If it does not deny the factual assertions in the complaint, it will typically raise legal defenses, known as affirmative defenses, arguing that even if everything the plaintiff alleges is true, the defendant should not be held liable, because of extenuating circumstances.
Discovery: Once the initial documents have been filed by both parties in the correct Urbandale, Iowa court, the discovery process begins. "Discovery" refers to a wide range of disclosures that each side of the lawsuit must make to the other. Essentially, everyone involved in the lawsuit has to disclose every piece of information in their possession (with some exceptions) that's relevant to the factual issues in the case. There are a few different methods that are employed in this process: each side can send written questions to the other, which must be answered under oath. They can additionally request documents, as well as access to physical evidence. They can also conduct depositions (in-person Q&A sessions) of parties and witnesses.
Trial: it's truly very uncommon for lawsuits to go trial in Urbandale, Iowa, because the rules of civil procedure in Urbandale, and nearly everywhere else, encourage speedy resolution of legal disputes, before they ever see the inside of a courtroom. This is largely accomplished by judges dismissing cases that clearly have no merit, or the parties settling out of court. However, when neither of these things is possible, both sides of the lawsuit will have to hash it out in a trial, which can be the most stressful and expensive step in the process. It involves both sides of the case presenting their evidence and arguments to a jury and judge, and letting them decide the issues.
How Can a Urbandale, Iowa Lawyer Help?
If you are facing a legal issue of any kind in Urbandale, Iowa, you are going to confront civil procedure issues.
The rules of civil procedure in Urbandale, Iowa are not always simple or intuitive. With that in mind, it's very important to have a knowledgeable attorney on your side, to help you through the process.