Litigation Lawyers in Metairie
"Civil procedure" refers to the wide variety of rules that regulate the process of civil litigation in Metairie, Louisiana. It does not deal with the substantive rights that the litigation system is meant to safeguard, just the process by which it protects them.
The civil procedure rules in Metairie, Louisiana are designed around a few simple goals for the civil litigation system: efficiency, accessibility, cost-effectiveness, and, most especially, fairness.
Civil litigation in Metairie, Louisiana is almost never a simple process. So, the rules controlling this process can't always be simple, either. Remember, civil procedure governs every single step of the civil litigation process, which can drag on for years.
Major Metairie, Louisiana Civil Procedure Issues
Complaint: The complaint is probably the most important document that the plaintiff will file in a Metairie, Louisiana lawsuit, and it is normally 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. Thus, 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 normally contains a few things: usually, it denies most of the allegations made by the plaintiff. If it does not deny the factual assertions in the complaint, it will normally 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 Metairie, Louisiana court of competent jurisdiction, the next important 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 received by sending the other side written questions, which must be answered under oath, demanding access to documents, and deposing witnesses.
Trial: Although the trial is arguably the most dramatic element of civil procedure in Metairie, Louisiana, it is really very rare for civil lawsuits to make it this far. Civil procedure in Metairie is designed to encourage early settlement of cases, or dismissal of cases that don't have any legal or factual merit. Nonetheless, in the rare cases when the case is not dismissed, and the parties can't reach a settlement, the matter will go to trial. A trial is the most visible aspect of civil litigation, and it is the stage when all of the legal and factual questions raised by both parties are resolved by a judge and jury, respectively.
How Can a Metairie, Louisiana Lawyer Help?
If you're suing anyone, or are being sued, in Metairie, Louisiana, dealing with issues of civil procedure is going to be a fact of life for quite some time.
In Metairie, Louisiana, procedural pitfalls can derail an otherwise-valid case. They can also be some of the most obtuse and convoluted issues in the whole case. Thus, you should not go into something like this without the counsel of an attorney.