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Filing a Lawsuit

There are many circumstances that can lead to a lawsuit, running the gamut from getting injured to having a dispute with a business. While bringing a lawsuit is not necessarily a decision to take lightly, sometimes litigation can be the best avenue to straighten out a dispute. In the sections you can find a range of articles dealing with the decision to sue and how to go about it. The topic of lawyers and their fees is also covered below, with information addressing what kind of services are offered by an attorney, the types of fees that can be charged, and more. Please select from the options below for specific resources on a topic.

Personal Jurisdiction: How to Determine Where a Person Can Be Sued

Personal (or in personam) jurisdiction can be defined as the court’s power to compel a defendant to appear before it, to adjudicate claims made by or against the defendant, and to enforce any judgment entered in connection with such claims. In the absence of personal jurisdiction, a court may not exercise judicial power over a defendant. A court must dismiss a lawsuit upon discovery that personal jurisdiction does not exist. Any judgment entered by a court that is eventually found to lack personal jurisdiction is ineffectual and need not be honored by a court in a different jurisdiction. The basic concept behind determining personal jurisdiction is evaluating whether courts in that state have a vested interest in you and a right to make binding decisions over you.

Trial and Verdict

Cases are going to trial less frequently these days and parties are increasingly opting to settle "out of court." For those cases that do make it trial, there's an order in which things happen in the courtroom. A complete civil trial typically consists of six main phases: 1) Choosing a Jury, 2) Opening Statements, 3) Witness Testimony and Cross-Examination, 4) Closing Arguments, 5) Jury Instruction, 6) Jury Deliberation and 7) Verdict.

What Is Summary Judgment?

Frequently, during the litigation process one or both of the parties involved will attempt to use a procedural device known as the motion for summary judgment to dismiss certain issues from the case. As the name implies, the motion for summary judgment is a motion filed by one of the parties seeking to obtain a judgment on all or part of the case in a summary fashion. In other words, the motion for summary judgment is a method to decide an issue (or the whole case), without the need for a trial.

How Does a Retainer Fee Work in a Civil Case?

A retainer is a dollar amount that represents a certain number of the lawyer's work hours at a set price, sometimes representing an estimate of the total cost of the lawyer's services on the case. A client pays a retainer in advance. By accepting the retainer, the lawyer is agreeing to not only work on your case, but also not to accept any cases that might present a conflict of interest with the case. -

How a Civil Attorney Can Help

Seeking out legal advice about your case before filing it is just the first part in a long, and often complicated, process. An experienced civil attorney will be able to analyze the information and evidence you've gathered, and advise you about whether or not you have a viable claim. To learn more about your case, you can seek out a free claim evaluation from an experienced attorney.