Litigation Lawyers in Fort Stockton
If you are a resident of Fort Stockton, Texas and believe that somebody has committed a legal wrong against you, and have decided that the effort and expense involved in seeking compensation is worth it, you may consider filing a lawsuit.
If you are contemplating filing a lawsuit, you should know that there are many factors that need to be considered before doing so. You should definitely contact a knowledgeable attorney from Fort Stockton, Texas before you proceed.
Your Fort Stockton, Texas civil litigation attorney will be able to advise you on whether or not you have a legitimate case, and, if so, your best options on how to proceed. The attorney will also discuss with you the fees for their services, and whether he or she can represent you on a contingency basis.
Steps for Filing a Lawsuit in Fort Stockton, Texas
Consultation with your attorney: Before you file a lawsuit in a Fort Stockton, Texas court, you need to meet and confer with a local lawyer. You lawyer in Fort Stockton, Texas can advise you on whether or not your lawsuit has merit, and how likely it is to succeed.
Drafting The Complaint: In Fort Stockton, Texas, the first step to filing a lawsuit, once you've actually decided to do so (in consultation with your attorney), is writing a complaint. A complaint is simply a list of facts that you allege against the defendant. A court must look at these allegations and determine if they add up to a valid cause of action, assuming they're true. If they do not add up to a cause of action, the case may be dismissed. The complaint also typically ask the court to provide specific relief, should it rule in the plaintiff's favor.
Serving The Defendant: Once you, or your lawyer, have drafted a complaint, the defendant must be served with it, so they have notice that they're being sued, and are given time to prepare a defense. Fort Stockton, Texas has particular rules governing how a complaint must be served, for the service to be valid. Personal service (having someone give the documents directly to the defendant) is preferred. However, some courts will also accept service by mail in limited circumstances, or service upon an adult member of the defendant's household.
Await the Response: The defendant in Fort Stockton, Texas has an opportunity to respond to the allegations against them. They have various options in how they respond to a lawsuit. They can move to dismiss the case (arguing that, even if everything the complaint alleges is true, they would still not be liable for anything), or they can file with the court, and serve upon the plaintiff an answer. An answer is a point-by-point disposal of every allegation against the defendant. The defendant can admit the allegations, deny them, or claim that they do not have enough information to admit or deny them (which basically operates as a denial). Typically, the defendant will admit the inconsequential allegations, so they don't have to be litigated (if the lawsuit is about a car accident involving the plaintiff and defendant, they'll probably go ahead and admit that the accident took place), but deny any allegation that could establish liability, if true (they'll deny responsibility for the car accident, for example). If the defendant does not respond by the deadline, they will have a default judgment entered against them, and automatically lose the case.
How Can A Fort Stockton, Texas Tort Lawyer Help?
As you can see, it can be an intricate and difficult process to file a lawsuit in Fort Stockton, Texas, and it is, in fact, much more intricate than the basic outline you just read.
Therefore, if you want to file a lawsuit against someone in Fort Stockton, Texas, you should not hesitate to speak with an attorney, who will be able to advise you on the best way to proceed.