Litigation Lawyers in Westville
"Civil procedure" refers to the wide variety of rules that govern the process of civil litigation in Westville, Indiana. It does not deal with the substantive rights that the litigation system is meant to protect, just the process by which it protects them.
The rules of civil procedure in Westville, Indiana are designed to make the process of civil litigation as efficient, affordable, simple, and fair as possible.
Civil litigation in Westville, Indiana is almost never a simple process. So, the rules governing this process can't always be simple, either. Remember, civil procedure covers every single step of the civil litigation process, which can drag on for years.
Major Westville, Indiana Civil Procedure Issues
Complaint: The complaint is probably the most important document that the plaintiff will file in a Westville, Indiana 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: After the complaint has been filed in the Westville, Indiana court of competent jurisdiction, the next major phase is the discovery process. In a civil lawsuit, there are not supposed to be any surprises (so the dramatic moments you see in TV trials are largely fiction). This predictability largely comes from the discovery process. Each side of the lawsuit has to disclose information relevant to the lawsuit to the other. This information can be acquired by sending the other side written questions, which must be answered under oath, demanding access to documents, and deposing witnesses.
Trial: it's truly very uncommon for lawsuits to go trial in Westville, Indiana, because the rules of civil procedure in Westville, 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 Westville, Indiana Lawyer Help?
If you are facing a legal issue of any kind in Westville, Indiana, you are going to confront civil procedure issues.
The rules of civil procedure in Westville, Indiana 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.