Litigation Lawyers in Petoskey
If you live in Petoskey, Michigan 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 are contemplating filing a lawsuit, you should know that there are many factors that need to be considered before doing so. You should definitely hire a good attorney from Petoskey, Michigan before you proceed.
Your Petoskey, Michigan 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 Petoskey, Michigan
Consultation with your attorney: You should always speak with a Petoskey, Michigan lawyer who specializes in civil litigation before filing any type of lawsuit in a court in Petoskey, Michigan. Your lawyer will have important information and advise, helping you decide whether or not your chances of success in the lawsuit make it worth your while to proceed.
Drafting The Complaint: Once you decide that pursuing a lawsuit in Petoskey, Michigan civil court is worth your time and effort, you need to file a complaint. The complaint can set the tone, and frame the issues, for the rest of the litigation process, which can drag on for months, or even years (and decades, in some cases). This is because the complaint lays out all the allegations against the defendant. It also usually asks the court for specific relief, should it rule in the plaintiff's favor.
Serving The Defendant: After you draft your complaint, and file it with the court, you have to let the defendant know that they're being sued. The law of Petoskey, Michigan requires that the defendant be given advance notice of the lawsuit as a matter of basic fairness: if you were being sued, you'd want to be given time to find a lawyer and prepare your defense strategy, right? So, with that in mind, the law prefers that defendants be served personally, generally through the use of a paid process server.
Await Defendant's Response: When you have served the defendant with the complaint in Petoskey, Michigan, the defendant has time to respond. The most common response is known as an "answer," in which they specifically address the factual allegations you've made against them, usually by denying most of the allegations. They might also move to dismiss the case if they can argue that the complaint is legally flawed. A judge then has to rule on this motion. If the defendant doesn't respond within a certain period of time, they are said to have "defaulted." This allows the court to enter a default judgment, in which the plaintiff essentially automatically wins the lawsuit. Once this happens, the defendant, if they're ever located, can be served with the judgment, and will have very little power to challenge the merits of your case.
How Can A Petoskey, Michigan Tort Lawyer Help?
This article gives you a basic picture of what is required to file a lawsuit in Petoskey, Michigan. However, it should not, under any circumstances, be read as a complete guide to the litigation process.
If you have suffered a legal wrong in and decide to sue the person who you believed wronged you, you should consult with a qualified Petoskey, Michigan attorney.