Litigation Lawyers in Cottage Grove
Residents of Cottage Grove, Wisconsin who suffer legal wrongs are typically legally entitled to compensation for harm they incurred as a result. This compensation is typically obtained by filing a lawsuit.
If you're considering filing a lawsuit, there are many things you need to consider, and it is not a decision to be made lightly. You should not file a lawsuit without seeking the advice of a Cottage Grove, Wisconsin civil litigation attorney first.
Your Cottage Grove, Wisconsin 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 Cottage Grove, Wisconsin
Consultation with your attorney: You should always speak with a Cottage Grove, Wisconsin lawyer who specializes in civil litigation before filing any type of lawsuit in a court in Cottage Grove, Wisconsin. Your lawyer will have important information and advise, helping you decide whether or not your chances of success in the lawsuit make it worth your while to proceed.
Drafting a Complaint: Once you have decided to go through with filing a lawsuit in a Cottage Grove, Wisconsin court, you need to draft a complaint, with the help of your lawyer. A complaint is typically the first step in actually filing a lawsuit. The complaint is the plaintiff's first opportunity to lay out the allegations against the defendant. If a complaint doesn't allege facts that add up to a valid lawsuit (that is, even if everything alleged in the complaint is true, the defendant has still not committed a legal wrong that the court can compensate), the case will have to be dismissed. When a case is dismissed for this reason, the court typically gives the plaintiff a chance to re-submit the complaint, with the errors corrected.
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. Cottage Grove, Wisconsin 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 Defendant's Response: When you have served the defendant with the complaint in Cottage Grove, Wisconsin, the defendant has time to respond. The most prevalent response is known as an "answer," in which they specifically address the factual allegations you've made against them, typically by denying most of the allegations. They might also move to dismiss the case if they can argue that the complaint is legally flawed. A judge then has to rule on this motion. If the defendant doesn't respond within a given period of time, they are said to have "defaulted." This allows the court to enter a default judgment, in which the plaintiff essentially automatically wins the lawsuit. Once this happens, the defendant, if they're ever located, can be served with the judgment, and will have very little power to challenge the merits of your case.
How Can A Cottage Grove, Wisconsin Tort Lawyer Help?
This simple outline is meant to give you a general idea of what goes into filing a lawsuit in Cottage Grove, Wisconsin, but it is by no means a comprehensive guide.
Therefore, if you want to file a lawsuit against someone in Cottage Grove, Wisconsin, you should not hesitate to speak with an attorney, who will be able to advise you on the best way to proceed.