Archive for August, 2012

Why It Is Important To Know The Different Stages Of Litigation

Being involved in an accident of any kind is not an enjoyable for anyone. No matter if this is your first accident or your third, understanding the different stages of litigation can be a rather daunting task. Today we’ll look at why the average person should at the very least know the different stages of litigation on a general basis even if they are using the services of a personal injury lawyer. Here is a guide to help you along.

Civil litigation, which is the process of filing a legal action against someone who has caused your damages in an accident, is a six-step process. The six steps of litigation are, pleadings, discovery, mediation, pre-trial, trial, and appeal. Here is some further detail on a few of the major steps every person should know.

Pleadings is the general process in which both parties exchange documents regarding the lawsuit. The first document sent from the plaintiff’s lawyers to the defense and their lawyers, is the framework for the lawsuit and why you are suing. Within the pleadings, you need to include, the names of the parties involved to indicate who you are suing, how much money you wish to be compensated, the evidence of the accident taking place, and the legal basis of your claim. Once the claims statement is given to the defendant, they must then provide the plaintiff with a defense claim, indicating that they should not be compensated.

Discovery as the name suggests, is the process in which both sides of the lawsuit exchange the evidence to prove and disprove who was at fault and why they are innocent. The discovery process is a two-step in which you must give the evidence through documents, and be cross examined by each lawyer involved in the case. After both sides provide testimonies and the witnesses testify, the lawyers can then decide if mediation, and trial need to be the next step. In some cases, the discovery process basically indicates to both sides that a deal for compensation benefiting both sides can be worked out. If it can’t, then mediation with a judge called a mediator is the next recourse of litigation.