Litigation Lawyers in Mitchell
"Civil procedure" in Mitchell, South Dakota is a very broad term, and it refers to the wide variety of rules that control 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 civil procedure rules in Mitchell, South Dakota are designed around a few simple goals for the civil litigation system: efficiency, accessibility, cost-effectiveness, and, most notably, fairness.
Mitchell, South Dakota's civil procedure rules can get pretty difficult, however. They control every aspect of a civil action, from the filing of the complaint, to discovery, and all the way through trial and appeals.
Major Mitchell, South Dakota Civil Procedure Issues
Complaint: In Mitchell, South Dakota the initial step in suing somebody (after speaking with a lawyer to determine if you have a case) is normally filing a complaint. The complaint is also one of the most significant documents in the civil litigation process. By laying out the wrongs that the plaintiff alleges the defendant has committed, as well as the remedies that the plaintiff wants the court to provide, it can set the tone for the entire rest of the case.
Answer: For the defendant, the answer is normally the first document they file in a lawsuit. As the name suggests, it "answers" the plaintiff's complaint. The answer usually denies most, or all, of the allegations made by the plaintiff. If the allegations are factually correct, and the defendant knows this, the defendant might admit that the allegations are true, but because of extenuating circumstances, they should not be held liable. For instance, in a lawsuit for battery, a defendant might admit that they did strike the plaintiff, but claim that they were acting in self-defense, which would negate or weaken the plaintiff's case.
Discovery: After the complaint has been filed in the Mitchell, South Dakota 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 received by sending the other side written questions, which must be answered under oath, demanding access to documents, and deposing witnesses.
Trial: It's quite rare for lawsuits in Mitchell, South Dakota to go to trial. Mitchell's civil procedure rules really discourage trials, and rather have designed the system so that it's almost always more cost-effective to settle out of court. Nonetheless, if this is not possible, the matter will go to trial, where a judge and/or jury will decide the factual questions, and then award the appropriate relief (if any) to the prevailing party.
How Can a Mitchell, South Dakota Lawyer Help?
If you are facing a legal issue of any sort in Mitchell, South Dakota, you are going to face civil procedure issues.
Because the rules of civil procedure in Mitchell, South Dakota are complicated, it's smart to have the counsel of an accomplished attorney through every step of the process.