How to File a Lawsuit: A Helpful Guide

Did you know that every year there are around 40 million lawsuits filed in the United States? If you are thinking of filing a lawsuit, but are not sure how to file a lawsuit, we are here to help. We have put together this short step-by-step guide on filing a lawsuit.

Keep reading to learn our top tips for filing a lawsuit.

1. Complaint

The first step in filing a lawsuit is to file a complaint with your local county court. This complaint will be served as a summons to the Defendant in the case or to a designated registered agent. The Defendant might be served by mail or in person by a process server. 

2. Answering the Complaint

Once the Defendant is served they have a specific time period to file their answer with the court. This document or answer has to then be filed with the Court in writing, responding to the allegations that are set forth in the complaint. 

Keep in mind that this response will be filed with the same court. 

3. Discovery

In this part of the lawsuit, each party has the right to request the information that they want in regards to the case. Each party involved in the lawsuit can request to have certain documents and questions answered. These requests will come in the form of Admissions which will ask you to admit or deny the facts that are stated.

4. Not Responding to Discovery

There is a certain amount of time allowed to respond to Discovery. If this time is not met it will lead to legal consequences that are not in your favor. When the defendant misses the time frame to respond, you might have the opportunity to file a Motion to Compel. 

In this situation, the judge will be asked to enforce the Discovery requests. Answering the Discovery questions in a timely and truthful manner is imperative to ensure further legal troubles. 

Whenever the Defendant fails to answer the Complaint that is filed, a motion for Entry of Default Judgement should be filed with the court system. Here, the judge will take a look at the case and approve the motion ordering the Defendant to pay damages. 

5. Reaching a Settlement

Most lawsuits do not go through a trial, they are settled before trial during mediation. During this time both parties have the opportunity to come up with a solution that they agree on to avoid presenting the entire case to a jury and have the jury make a final decision. 

At this time you can look into receiving a lump sum settlement if you want everything paid out at once. 

Now You Know How to File a Lawsuit

We hope that now that you know how to file a lawsuit you can feel confident in this journey. If you are having a hard time you can always hire an attorney to hold your hand as you navigate the legal system. 

Did you find this blog post helpful? Please keep browsing the rest of this legal section for our latest. 

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