Litigation Lawyers in Wilkes Barre
"Civil procedure" in Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania is a very broad term, and it refers to the wide variety of rules that control how civil litigation is conducted. It is to be distinguished from substantive law, which governs the rights that civil litigation is meant to vindicate.
In Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania, the civil procedure rules are meant to ensure that the civil litigation system is as efficient, accessible, fair, and cost-effective as possible.
Civil litigation in Wilkes Barre, 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 Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania Civil Procedure Issues
Complaint: Perhaps the most important part of filing a lawsuit in Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania is the complaint. The complaint is a document filed with a Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania court that lays out the plaintiff's (the person filing the suit) allegations against the defendant (the person being sued), as well as the relief that the plaintiff is seeking from the court.
Answer: Once the complaint is filed, the ball is in the defendant's court, so to speak. In the answer, the defendant has an opportunity to respond to all of the factual allegations made by the plaintiff, normally by denying them. The defendant might also raise affirmative defenses, which could prevent the defendant from being held liable. For example, if the defendant is accused of battery, and he did, in fact, batter the plaintiff, he might admit to that fact, but claim that the plaintiff was the aggressor, and he acted purely in self-defense. If he can show that he acted in self-defense, he likely will not be held liable.
Discovery: After the complaint has been filed in the Wilkes Barre, 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 received by sending the other side written questions, which must be answered under oath, demanding access to documents, and deposing witnesses.
Trial: It is really quite rare for civil lawsuits in Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania to go to trial, since the rules of civil procedure in Wilkes Barre strongly encourage early resolution to cases by dismissal of lawsuits that have no merit, and negotiated settlement of those that do. However, when neither of those things happen, the case goes to trial. This is when a judge and jury decide the questions of law and fact, respectively, raised in the case. The jury then issues a verdict, based on the evidence presented to them.
How Can a Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania Lawyer Help?
If you're facing any considerable legal issue in Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania, you can be pretty much certain that you'll face at least a few procedural complications that can hold up the process.
Because the rules of civil procedure in Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania are complicated, it's smart to have the counsel of an accomplished attorney through every step of the process.