Litigation Lawyers in Farmington
"Civil procedure" refers to the wide variety of rules that govern the process of civil litigation in Farmington, Minnesota. It does not deal with the substantive rights that the litigation system is meant to protect, just the process by which it protects them.
Farmington, Minnesota's government strives to make the civil justice system fair, efficient, and accessible. The rules of civil procedure are designed to encourage those goals, to the greatest extent possible.
Civil litigation, however, is inherently difficult. So, there is no getting around the fact that the civil procedure rules in Farmington, Minnesota are also going to be somewhat convoluted and obtuse (or at least parts of them are). Remember, these rules govern every single thing that happens in a civil lawsuit, from the first complaint, to the last appeal.
Major Farmington, Minnesota Civil Procedure Issues
Complaint: The first, and perhaps most important, part of filing a lawsuit in Farmington, Minnesota is the complaint. The complaint is filed with the court in Farmington, Minnesota that's responsible for handling civil trials. It lists everything that the plaintiff (the person who is suing) alleges against the defendant (the person the plaintiff is suing). Normally, but not always, the end of the complaint will contain a "prayer for relief." The prayer for relief is simply a statement of what the plaintiff is asking the court to do to remedy the harm that the defendant allegedly caused.
Answer: Once the complaint is filed, the ball is in the defendant's court, so to speak. In the answer, the defendant has an opportunity to respond to all of the factual allegations made by the plaintiff, normally by denying them. The defendant might also raise affirmative defenses, which could prevent the defendant from being held liable. For example, if the defendant is accused of battery, and he did, in fact, batter the plaintiff, he might admit to that fact, but claim that the plaintiff was the aggressor, and he acted purely in self-defense. If he can show that he acted in self-defense, he likely will not be held liable.
Discovery: Once the complaint and answer have been filed in a Farmington, Minnesota court, the next major civil procedure issue comes up. Discovery is the process in which both sides of the lawsuit are required to disclose required evidence to one another. The lawyers for each side can submit written questions, which the other party is required to answer under oath, unless the information is privileged. Each side can also request any relevant documents, physical evidence, and can conduct depositions of witnesses and parties to the lawsuit.
Trial: it's really very uncommon for lawsuits to go trial in Farmington, Minnesota, because the rules of civil procedure in Farmington, 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 Farmington, Minnesota Lawyer Help?
If you're facing any considerable legal issue in Farmington, Minnesota, you can be pretty much certain that you'll face at least a few procedural complications that can hold up the process.
Because the rules of civil procedure in Farmington, Minnesota are complicated, it's smart to have the counsel of an accomplished attorney through every step of the process.