General Litigation is a legal process that is used for settling disputes between two or more parties. The parties are made up of people, organizations, or the state. They are legal processes with no criminal charges or penalties, instead they are laws stated by the legislature and covered by statutes and the settlement usually requires one party to pay the other party.
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Why Do You Need General Litigation?
General litigation can be anything from a dispute about a will, consumer fraud, various contracts, marriage, divorce or personal injury. The term litigation is used to describe the process once legal action is initiated and includes all activities before, during, and after a lawsuit. Settlement of the dispute can happen between the parties when they come to an agreement outside the courtroom or it can go to trial where a jury or judge will issue a judgment. Depending on the case, the process from beginning to end can take months or even years to reach a settlement.
What Does General Litigation Entail?
The process of General litigation is usually as follows; The Plaintiff files a claim, which is then served to the defendant. The defendant then must answer their claim and may decide to counter sue. Next is the discovery phase where both sides prepare their cases through collecting evidence in the form of witnesses or relevant documents, both parties may ask for information from the other party involved. After the discovery phase is usually when an agreement is reached. An independent mediator will sit down with both parties to reach an agreement. If resolution is not accomplished in mediation, then the suit goes to trial where a judge or jury will determine the settlement. The types of disputes can be vast and may include:
- Environmental Law
- Landlord/tenant disputes
- Product liability lawsuits
- Personal injury claims
- Intellectual property disputes
- Construction liability lawsuits
- Medical malpractice claims
- Employment and labor disputes
- Real estate lawsuits
- Anti-trust litigation
- Workers’ compensation claims
- Education law disputes
- Divorce lawsuits
Most of these lawsuits generally do not go to trial, instead most are able to settle in mediation. However, the process of general litigation can still be quite intense, and it is best to hire an attorney to help steer through the process and ensure all criteria are met as well building the best possible case through discovery. An attorney will be able to learn the facts about the case, allowing them to provide the best possible outcome for you. They will be able to identify where your arguments strengths and weaknesses lie to best represent your case. The attorney will be there to answer any legal questions and be your advocate and have your best interest in mind. Even once the case is settled your attorney will be there to guide you through the post-trial process. If you feel your legal rights have been infringed upon then it is best to have a lawyer defend your rights.