Litigation Lawyers in Washington County
"Civil procedure" in Washington County, Oregon is a very broad term, and it refers to the wide variety of rules that regulate 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 Washington County, Oregon are designed to make the process of civil litigation as efficient, low-cost, simple, and fair as possible.
Civil litigation in Washington County, Oregon is almost never a simple process. So, the rules controlling this process can't always be simple, either. Remember, civil procedure governs every single step of the civil litigation process, which can drag on for years.
Major Washington County, Oregon Civil Procedure Issues
Complaint: The initial, and perhaps most significant, part of filing a lawsuit in Washington County, Oregon is the complaint. The complaint is filed with the court in Washington County, Oregon 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). Usually, but not always, the end of the complaint will contain a "prayer for relief." The prayer for relief is just a statement of what the plaintiff is asking the court to do to remedy the harm that the defendant allegedly caused.
Answer: The answer is a document filed by the defendant, in response to a complaint. The answer usually contains a few things: typically, it denies most of the allegations made by the plaintiff. If it does not deny the factual assertions in the complaint, it will usually 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: After the complaint has been filed in the Washington County, Oregon court of competent jurisdiction, the next important phase is the discovery process. In a civil lawsuit, there are not supposed to be any surprises (so the dramatic moments you see in TV trials are largely fiction). This predictability largely comes from the discovery process. Each side of the lawsuit has to disclose information relevant to the lawsuit to the other. This information can be obtained by sending the other side written questions, which must be answered under oath, demanding access to documents, and deposing witnesses.
Trial: it's actually very uncommon for lawsuits to go trial in Washington County, Oregon, because the rules of civil procedure in Washington County, and nearly everywhere else, encourage speedy resolution of legal disputes, before they ever see the inside of a courtroom. This is largely done by judges dismissing cases that clearly have no merit, or the parties settling out of court. Nonetheless, 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 determine the issues.
How Can a Washington County, Oregon Lawyer Help?
If you are dealing with a lawsuit in Washington County, Oregon, it's almost given that you will have to deal with issues regarding civil procedure.
The rules of civil procedure in Washington County, Oregon are not always simple or intuitive. With that in mind, it's very important to have a reputable attorney on your side, to help you through the process.