Litigation Lawyers in Dallastown
"Civil procedure" in Dallastown, Pennsylvania is a very broad term, and it refers to the wide variety of rules that regulate how civil litigation is conducted. It is to be distinguished from substantive law, which governs the rights that civil litigation is meant to vindicate.
The rules of civil procedure in Dallastown, Pennsylvania are designed to make the process of civil litigation as efficient, cost-effective, simple, and fair as possible.
Civil litigation in Dallastown, Pennsylvania is almost never a simple process. So, the rules governing this process can't always be simple, either. Remember, civil procedure covers every single step of the civil litigation process, which can drag on for years.
Major Dallastown, Pennsylvania Civil Procedure Issues
Complaint: The complaint is probably the most important document that the plaintiff will file in a Dallastown, Pennsylvania lawsuit, and it is usually the first. The complaint contains all of the plaintiff's allegations against the defendant, as well as the relief that the plaintiff is asking the court to provide. Therefore, it can frame the tone, as well as the legal and factual issues, that will dominate the rest of the case.
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 Dallastown, Pennsylvania court of competent jurisdiction, the next major 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: Although the trial is arguably the most dramatic element of civil procedure in Dallastown, Pennsylvania, it is actually extremely rare for civil lawsuits to make it this far. Civil procedure in Dallastown 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 Dallastown, Pennsylvania Lawyer Help?
If you're facing any significant legal issue in Dallastown, Pennsylvania, you can be pretty much certain that you'll face at least a few procedural complications that can hold up the process.
It should go without saying that you should have a Dallastown, Pennsylvania attorney on hand to deal with any civil procedure issues that you're almost certain to face, if you're involved in a lawsuit.