Filing a Lawsuit in Salem, Massachusetts

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Litigation Lawyers in Salem

If you live in Salem, Massachusetts and think that you might be the victim of a legal wrong, you may decide that it's worth suing over, to recover compensation from the person who wronged you.

If you think that filing a lawsuit is a good option in seeking redress, you should not rush into this decision. A lawsuit is a time-consuming and expensive process. You should not make a final decision without speaking to a Salem, Massachusetts attorney.

Your Salem, Massachusetts civil litigation attorney will be able to advise you on whether or not you have a legitimate case, and, if so, your best options on how to proceed. The attorney will also discuss with you the fees for their services, and whether he or she can represent you on a contingency basis.

Steps for Filing a Lawsuit in Salem, Massachusetts

Consultation with your attorney: Before you continue in any legal action in Salem, Massachusetts, you should speak with a knowledgeable local attorney in Salem, Massachusetts. Your legal counsel can make sure you have the best possible chance of winning your case, and help you decide if you should file your lawsuit in the first place.

Drafting the complaint: In Salem, Massachusetts, once you have decided to file a lawsuit, the first thing you typically have to do is draft a complaint. The complaint is a document that contains all of the allegations you're making against the defendant (the person whom you are suing). It typically must allege all of the facts necessary to constitute a cause of action, though in some systems, very few facts are strictly required to be alleged. It also normally has, at the end, a "prayer" (request) for relief. This final section tells the court what type of relief the plaintiff wants, should the court 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. Salem, Massachusetts has particular 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 Salem, Massachusetts, the law gives civil defendants a fairly long period of time (a month or two typically) to respond to a lawsuit against them. The most prevalent response is either an answer (where they address the factual allegations against them, typically 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 typically 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 Salem, Massachusetts Tort Lawyer Help?

The basic outline above does not come close to covering all the details involved in filing a lawsuit in Salem, Massachusetts.

Accordingly, it's always a good idea to speak with a Salem, Massachusetts litigation attorney if you are contemplating filing a lawsuit against a person or company.

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Life in Salem

Salem is in Essex County of Massachusetts. It is home to Salem State University. In history the city is known because of the Salem Witch Trials of 1692. Today, people visit Salem and check out sites such as the Nathaniel Bowditch House, Salem Common, The Witch House, Derby Square, Pickering House, Salem Willows Park, Ropes Mansion, and Salem Athenaeum.

Tourism is a significant contributor to Salem's economy. There are small law offices where attorneys have established their practice in many areas of law. Therefore, residents can rest assure that their legal needs can be taken care of.

Famous residents of Salem include Rick Brunson, Jeff Juden, Rob Oppenheim, Nathaniel Bowditch, John Endcott, John Hathorne, Bob Vila, Jack Welch, and Steve Thomas.

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