Litigation Lawyers in Alexandria
"Civil procedure" refers to the wide variety of rules that govern the process of civil litigation in Alexandria, Louisiana. 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 civil procedure rules in Alexandria, Louisiana are designed around a few simple goals for the civil litigation system: efficiency, accessibility, cost-effectiveness, and, most vitally, fairness.
Civil litigation in Alexandria, Louisiana 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 Alexandria, Louisiana Civil Procedure Issues
Complaint: Perhaps the most important part of filing a lawsuit in Alexandria, Louisiana is the complaint. The complaint is a document filed with an Alexandria, Louisiana court that lays out the plaintiff's (the person filing the suit) allegations against the defendant (the person being sued), as well as the relief that the plaintiff is seeking from the court.
Answer: The answer is typically the first document that the defendant files, and it is meant to serve as a direct response to the plaintiff's complaint. It typically denies all of the plaintiff's major allegations. It might also lay out affirmative defenses. An "affirmative defense" is a set of circumstances that negate the defendant's liability even if their conduct would ordinarily be unlawful. For example, in a lawsuit for battery, a defendant might admit that he struck the plaintiff, but claim that he acted in self-defense. If that can be proven, it would negate, or mitigate, his liability to the plaintiff.
Discovery: The civil procedure rules in Alexandria, Louisiana were written with the purpose of, among other things, avoiding surprises. For that reason, everyone engaged in a lawsuit goes into trial with a pretty good idea of what evidence the other side has. This is largely because of the discovery process, during which the attorneys for both sides are required to disclose (with some exemptions) all information relevant to the trial which they have in their possession. These disclosures come in multiple forms, such as simply sending boxes of documents, deposing witnesses, or submitting written questions to the other side, which the recipient is obligated to answer under oath.
Trial: It's quite rare for lawsuits in Alexandria, Louisiana to go to trial. Alexandria's civil procedure rules truly discourage trials, and alternatively have designed the system so that it's almost always more cost-effective to settle out of court. However, if this is not possible, the matter will go to trial, where a judge and/or jury will determine the factual questions, and then award the appropriate relief (if any) to the prevailing party.
How Can a Alexandria, Louisiana Lawyer Help?
If you are dealing with a lawsuit in Alexandria, Louisiana, it's almost certain that you will have to deal with issues concerning civil procedure.
The rules of civil procedure in Alexandria, Louisiana 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.