Litigation Lawyers in Bridgeton
"Civil procedure" refers to the wide variety of rules that govern the process of civil litigation in Bridgeton, Missouri. It does not deal with the substantive rights that the litigation system is meant to protect, just the process by which it protects them.
Bridgeton, Missouri's government strives to make the civil justice system fair, efficient, and accessible. The rules of civil procedure are designed to advocate those goals, to the greatest extent possible.
In Bridgeton, Missouri, civil litigation is often extremely intricate. So, it shouldn't be a surprise that the rules of civil procedure can also be fairly confusing. After all, they govern everything from the first document filed by the plaintiff, to the last ruling issued by an appeals court.
Major Bridgeton, Missouri Civil Procedure Issues
Complaint: When somebody believes that they have suffered a legal wrong in Bridgeton, Missouri, and decide to file a lawsuit, the first document that they file with the court is typically the complaint. The complaint is very important, because it can frame the factual and legal issues, and set the tone, for the rest of the process. The complaint normally contains every factual allegation against the defendant that forms the basis of the plaintiff's lawsuit. It also contains a prayer for relief, in which the plaintiff lays out his or her desired remedies, if the court finds the defendant liable.
Answer: The answer is a document filed by the defendant, in response to a complaint. The answer typically contains a few things: normally, it denies most of the allegations made by the plaintiff. If it does not deny the factual assertions in the complaint, it will typically 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: Once both sides have fired their opening volleys in the form of the complaint and answer, the next process in civil litigation in Bridgeton, Missouri is discovery. Under the civil procedure rules of most jurisdictions in the U.S., each side of a lawsuit is required by law to disclose relevant information to the other side. These disclosures come in the form of depositions, the production of documents, and answers to written questions submitted by opposing counsel.
Trial: Although the trial is arguably the most dramatic element of civil procedure in Bridgeton, Missouri, it is truly extremely rare for civil lawsuits to make it this far. Civil procedure in Bridgeton is designed to encourage early settlement of cases, or dismissal of cases that don't have any legal or factual merit. However, 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 Bridgeton, Missouri Lawyer Help?
If you're suing someone, or are being sued, in Bridgeton, Missouri, dealing with issues of civil procedure is going to be a fact of life for quite some time.
The rules of civil procedure in Bridgeton, Missouri are not always simple or intuitive. With that in mind, it's very important to have a knowledgeable attorney on your side, to help you through the process.