Litigation Lawyers in Tarrant County
"Civil procedure" in Tarrant County, Texas 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.
Tarrant County, Texas's government strives to make the civil justice system fair, efficient, and accessible. The rules of civil procedure are designed to encourage those goals, to the greatest extent possible.
Civil litigation, however, is inherently difficult. So, there is no getting around the fact that the civil procedure rules in Tarrant County, Texas are also going to be somewhat convoluted and obtuse (or at least parts of them are). Remember, these rules govern every single thing that happens in a civil lawsuit, from the first complaint, to the last appeal.
Major Tarrant County, Texas Civil Procedure Issues
Complaint: Perhaps the most important part of filing a lawsuit in Tarrant County, Texas is the complaint. The complaint is a document filed with a Tarrant County, Texas 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: 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 example, 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: The civil procedure rules in Tarrant County, Texas were written with the purpose of, among other things, avoiding surprises. For that reason, everyone immersed in a lawsuit goes into trial with a pretty good idea of what evidence the other side has. This is largely because of the discovery process, during which the attorneys for both sides are required to disclose (with some exemptions) all information relevant to the trial which they have in their possession. These disclosures come in multiple forms, such as simply sending boxes of documents, deposing witnesses, or submitting written questions to the other side, which the recipient is obligated to answer under oath.
Trial: It's quite rare for lawsuits in Tarrant County, Texas to go to trial. Tarrant County'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. However, if this is not possible, the matter will go to trial, where a judge and/or jury will determine the factual questions, and then award the appropriate relief (if any) to the prevailing party.
How Can a Tarrant County, Texas Lawyer Help?
If you are facing a legal issue of any kind in Tarrant County, Texas, you are going to face civil procedure issues.
Because the rules of civil procedure in Tarrant County, Texas are complicated, it's smart to have the counsel of an accomplished attorney through every step of the process.