Litigation Lawyers in Ruston
"Civil procedure" refers to the wide variety of rules that govern the process of civil litigation in Ruston, 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 Ruston, Louisiana are designed around a few simple goals for the civil litigation system: efficiency, accessibility, cost-effectiveness, and, most importantly, fairness.
Civil litigation in Ruston, 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 Ruston, Louisiana Civil Procedure Issues
Complaint: The complaint is probably the most important document that the plaintiff will file in a Ruston, Louisiana 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: For the defendant, the answer is typically the first document they file in a lawsuit. As the name suggests, it "answers" the plaintiff's complaint. The answer normally denies most, or all, of the allegations made by the plaintiff. If the allegations are factually correct, and the defendant knows this, the defendant might admit that the allegations are true, but because of extenuating circumstances, they should not be held liable. For example, in a lawsuit for battery, a defendant might admit that they did strike the plaintiff, but claim that they were acting in self-defense, which would negate or weaken the plaintiff's case.
Discovery: After the complaint has been filed in the Ruston, Louisiana 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 Ruston, Louisiana, because the rules of civil procedure in Ruston, 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 Ruston, Louisiana Lawyer Help?
If you're facing any substantial legal issue in Ruston, Louisiana, you can be pretty much certain that you'll face at least a few procedural complications that can hold up the process.
Civil Procedure in Ruston, Louisiana can be pretty intricate. It's always a good idea to have a lawyer who can advise you on how best to deal with these civil procedure issues.