Litigation Lawyers in Benton
If you live in , Illinois, and believe that you have sustained some form of legal wrong, you may wish to file a lawsuit against the individual who allegedly wronged you.
If you are contemplating filing a lawsuit, you should know that there are many factors that need to be considered before doing so. You should definitely retain a seasoned attorney from Benton, Illinois before you proceed.
Once you have retained an attorney in Benton, Illinois, 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 provide 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 Benton, Illinois
Consultation with your attorney: Before you file a lawsuit in a Benton, Illinois court, you need to meet and confer with a local lawyer. You lawyer in Benton, Illinois can advise you on whether or not your lawsuit has merit, and how possible it is to prevail.
Drafting The Complaint: In Benton, Illinois, the initial step to filing a lawsuit, once you've actually decided to do so (in consultation with your attorney), is writing a complaint. A complaint is simply a list of facts that you allege against the defendant. A court must look at these allegations and decide if they add up to a legitimate cause of action, assuming they're true. If they do not add up to a cause of action, the case may be dismissed. The complaint also normally ask the court to provide specific relief, should it rule in the plaintiff's favor.
Serving The Defendant: Once you, or your lawyer, have drafted a complaint, the defendant must be served with it, so they have notice that they're being sued, and are given time to prepare a defense. Benton, Illinois has certain rules governing how a complaint must be served, for the service to be valid. Personal service (having someone give the documents directly to the defendant) is preferred. However, some courts will also accept service by mail in limited circumstances, or service upon an adult member of the defendant's household.
Await Defendant's Response: In Benton, Illinois, the law gives civil defendants a fairly long period of time (a month or two normally) to respond to a lawsuit against them. The most frequent response is either an answer (where they address the factual allegations against them, normally 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 normally 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.
How Can A Benton, Illinois Tort Lawyer Help?
As you can see, it can be a complex and difficult process to file a lawsuit in Benton, Illinois, and it is, in fact, much more complex than the basic outline you just read.
Thus, if you want to file a lawsuit against someone in Benton, Illinois, you should not delay to talk with an attorney, who will be able to advise you on the best way to proceed.