Litigation Lawyers in Shaker Heights
"Civil procedure" in Shaker Heights, Ohio is a very broad term, and it refers to the wide variety of rules that govern how civil litigation is done. It is to be distinguished from substantive law, which controls the rights that civil litigation is meant to vindicate.
The rules of civil procedure in Shaker Heights, Ohio are designed to make the process of civil litigation as efficient, low-cost, simple, and fair as possible.
The rules of civil procedure in Shaker Heights, Ohio are sometimes confusing. Because civil litigation is an inherently intricate process, the rules that govern how it proceeds can't be simple, either. They govern every step of the litigation process, from filing the initial complaint, all the way to the final appeals process.
Major Shaker Heights, Ohio Civil Procedure Issues
Complaint: When somebody believes that they have suffered a legal wrong in Shaker Heights, Ohio, and decide to file a lawsuit, the initial document that they file with the court is typically the complaint. The complaint is very significant, 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: The civil procedure rules in Shaker Heights, Ohio were written with the purpose of, among other things, preventing surprises. For that reason, everyone engaged in a lawsuit goes into trial with a pretty good idea of what evidence the other side has. This is largely because of the discovery procedure, during which the attorneys for both sides are obligated to disclose (with some exemptions) all information relevant to the trial which they have in their possession. These disclosures come in several forms, such as simply sending boxes of documents, deposing witnesses, or submitting written questions to the other side, which the recipient is obligated to answer under oath.
Trial: Although the trial is arguably the most dramatic element of civil procedure in Shaker Heights, Ohio, it is truly very rare for civil lawsuits to make it this far. Civil procedure in Shaker Heights is designed to encourage early settlement of cases, or dismissal of cases that don't have any legal or factual merit. Nonetheless, 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 Shaker Heights, Ohio Lawyer Help?
If you're facing any substantial legal issue in Shaker Heights, Ohio, you can be pretty much sure that you'll face at least a few procedural complications that can hold up the process.
The rules of civil procedure in Shaker Heights, Ohio are not always simple or intuitive. With that in mind, it's very important to have a reliable attorney on your side, to help you through the process.