Filing a Lawsuit in Syracuse, New York

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If you are in Syracuse, New York and believe that some type of legal wrong has been committed against you, and decide that seeking legal redress will be worth the time and expense involved, you may wish to file a lawsuit.

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 contact a knowledgeable attorney from Syracuse, New York before you proceed.

The Syracuse, New York attorney you end up retaining will be able to advise you on whether you have a good case. If you do, they will also advise you on your best options on how to proceed. Your lawyer can also inform you about what their fees are, and if they have multiple payment options.

Steps for Filing a Lawsuit in Syracuse, New York

Consultation With Your Attorney: Before filing any lawsuit in Syracuse, New York, you should speak with a local attorney. Your Syracuse, New York attorney will be able to advise you on the merits of your lawsuit, and your chances of success.

Drafting a Complaint: Once you have decided to go through with filing a lawsuit in a Syracuse, New York court, you need to draft a complaint, with the help of your lawyer. A complaint is typically the first step in actually filing a lawsuit. The complaint is the plaintiff's first opportunity to lay out the allegations against the defendant. If a complaint doesn't allege facts that add up to a valid lawsuit (that is, even if everything alleged in the complaint is true, the defendant has still not committed a legal wrong that the court can compensate), the case will have to be dismissed. When a case is dismissed for this reason, the court typically gives the plaintiff a chance to re-submit the complaint, with the errors corrected.

Serving The Defendant: Once you have drafted your complaint, you need to serve the defendant with it, and file it with the court. Syracuse, New York requires that lawsuits be served on defendants in a specific way. This is to ensure that the defendant has a good deal of notice that they're being sued, giving them time to find an attorney, and work on how they're going to defend themselves. It is strongly preferred to serve defendants in person (with a disinterested third party delivering the papers to the defendant). Sometimes, however, the defendant cannot be found, or is trying to avoid service, they can be served by mail with court approval.

Await Defendant's Response: When you have served the defendant with the complaint in Syracuse, New York, the defendant has time to respond. The most prevalent response is known as an "answer," in which they specifically address the factual allegations you've made against them, typically 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 given 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 Syracuse, New York Tort Lawyer Help?

This article gives you a basic picture of what is required to file a lawsuit in Syracuse, New York. However, it should not, under any circumstances, be read as a complete guide to the litigation process.

You should seek the advice of a knowledgeable litigation attorney if you are planning on filing a lawsuit against somebody who you think has wronged you in Syracuse, New York.

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Life in Syracuse

Syracuse, New York is the county seat of Onondaga County, New York. It has a population of about 145,000 people.

The first Europeans to settle the Syracuse area were French missionaries, who arrived in 1615. Before and during the Civil War, Syracuse, New York became a major center for the abolitionist movement, and was an important stop in the Underground Railroad. During this period, many Syracuse, New York lawyers who were opposed to slavery helped ensure that the constitutional rights of freed and escaped slaves were protected.

Modernly, Syracuse is home to Syracuse University, which is a major research institution. Syracuse University has a well-known and prestigious law school. Many of its graduates have gone on to become highly successful Syracuse, New York lawyers.

If you are a resident of the Syracuse, New York area, and are facing a legal problem, or believe that your legal rights have been violated, you should not hesitate to speak with a Syracuse, New York attorney as soon as possible.

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