Litigation Lawyers in Richland
In Richland, Washington, civil procedure is clearly what it sounds like: it refers to the laws that control how civil litigation is done.
The rules of civil procedure in Richland, Washington are designed to make the process of civil litigation as efficient, inexpensive, simple, and fair as possible.
In Richland, Washington, civil litigation is frequently extremely difficult. So, it shouldn't be a surprise that the rules of civil procedure can also be fairly intricate. After all, they govern everything from the first document filed by the plaintiff, to the last ruling issued by an appeals court.
Major Richland, Washington Civil Procedure Issues
Complaint: When somebody believes that they have suffered a legal wrong in Richland, Washington, and decide to file a lawsuit, the initial document that they file with the court is normally the complaint. The complaint is very significant, because it can frame the factual and legal issues, and set the tone, for the rest of the process. The complaint usually contains every factual allegation against the defendant that forms the basis of the plaintiff's lawsuit. It also contains a prayer for relief, in which the plaintiff lays out his or her desired remedies, if the court finds the defendant liable.
Answer: After the plaintiff files the complaint, the defendant has to act. While they have a few avenues at this stage of the game, most defendants elect to file an answer. The answer is the defendant's first direct response to the plaintiff's allegations. Occasionally, the answer contains a general denial, in which the defendant simply denies everything the plaintiff alleges. It might also contain a point-by-point addressing of every allegation the plaintiff makes, denying some, and admitting some.
Discovery: Once the complaint and answer have been filed in a Richland, Washington court, the next major civil procedure issue comes up. Discovery is the procedure in which both sides of the lawsuit are obligated to disclose obligated evidence to one another. The lawyers for each side can submit written questions, which the other party is required to answer under oath, unless the information is privileged. Each side can also request any relevant documents, physical evidence, and can conduct depositions of witnesses and parties to the lawsuit.
Trial: Although the trial is arguably the most dramatic element of civil procedure in Richland, Washington, it is really very rare for civil lawsuits to make it this far. Civil procedure in Richland is designed to encourage early settlement of cases, or dismissal of cases that don't have any legal or factual merit. Nonetheless, 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 Richland, Washington Lawyer Help?
If you're suing anyone, or are being sued, in Richland, Washington, dealing with issues of civil procedure is going to be a fact of life for quite some time.
The rules of civil procedure in Richland, Washington are not always simple or intuitive. With that in mind, it's very important to have a seasoned attorney on your side, to help you through the process.