A lawsuit is a civil action filed by one party (the plaintiff) against another party (the defendant). A lawsuit can involve many different types of cases, including but not limited to:
The most common reason for suing someone is for money. However, there are many complex factors that go into deciding whether or not to sue and what type of case you should file. A lawyer can help you determine if a lawsuit is the right move and what steps you should take if you decide to proceed with the lawsuit.
The first step in filing a lawsuit is usually to submit the complaint form and any other forms that are required for your case, such as an order of service. The specific requirements will vary based on the type of case, the court and its rules and laws. The complaint sets forth the facts and legal basis for your claim. It is often helpful to use phrases such as, “upon information and belief,” when describing certain facts in your complaint. This is a way to establish that you are not making a claim solely upon speculation or hearsay.
Your complaint should also include a demand section that includes what you want the court to do, such as awarding damages. The plaintiff’s demand should be clear, concise and direct. It should explain the case type, why you think you should win and what damages you want to be awarded. It’s helpful to cite any supporting documents in the demand letter, such as police reports and medical records, if you have them. Incorporating these by reference in your complaint saves time and money for the court clerk and judge, who are both very busy.