Civilian Court and What to Expect

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First of All, What is a Civil Court Case?

A civilian court case is a case in which one party sues another for damages. These cases don't involve crimes, but a disagreement or dispute or failure to fulfill a specific responsibility. Examples of these types of cases: Contractor issues, Divorce cases, Negligence Cases, and Personal injury cases.

Step 1

A lawyer is hired and a complaint is filed in proper court naming the defendant and describing the lawsuit.

Step 2

The court sends a summons to the defendant, notifying them to appear in court on a certain day and time.

The Pleadings

Steps 1 and 2 together are called the pleadings. In this stage, both sides gather evidence to help their case and they exchange pleadings in response to the accusation. Most cases are settled out of court in this stage. These meetings usually have some sort of mediator or arbitrator to make sure everyone's best interests are the priority of the meetings

Step 3

This stage is the pre-trial conference, in which the judge has a meeting with the defendant and the prosecution if the trial is thought to go to court.

Step 4

If the parties do not settle out of court, the case goes to trial. During the trial, the plaintiff presents its side 1st, then the defendant goes second. After that, both sides summarize their cases. In order for the plaintiff to win the case, they have to have a preponderance of evidence, which is enough evidence to make it more likely than not that the plaintiff's claims are true.

Step 5

After all of the evidence has been presented and both sides summarize their cases, either the judge or the jury reaches a verdict. If the verdict is in favor of the defendant, the plaintiff gets nothing and has to pay court costs. If the verdict is in favor of the plaintiff, the defendant is forced to pay the plaintiff. If you do not like the verdict that is reached, you always have the right to appeal the decision.