Arthur Law Firm

Here's a guide to everything you need to know.

Important Terms

The plaintiff is the person who brings a case against another in the court. The defendant is an individual that is being sued or accused in court. A complaint is a statement that a situation is unacceptable, that may be what the plaintiff is charging the defendant with.

Before the Trial

Leading up to the trial there will be a pretrial conference which is a meeting of the judge and lawyers to discuss which matters should be presented to the jury, to review evidence and witnesses, to set a timetable, and to discuss the settlement of the case.

During the Trial

The trial is a formal explanation of evidence before a judge, and typically before the jury, in order to decide guilt in a case of criminal or civil proceedings. The plaintiff and defendant will make their pleadings or their formal statement of the cause of an action or defense. The preponderance of evidence is the greater weight of the evidence required in a civil lawsuit for the trier of the fact to decide in favor of one side or the other. If there is a dispute an arbitrator will be used to mediate it.

After the Trial

After all of the evidence is presented in the trial the jury and judge will come to a verdict or a decision on the issue that was disputed in court. If the plaintiff does not believe that their trial was fair, they can appeal the courts decision and go to The Court of Appeals.