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5 Things You Should Know Before Filing A Civil Lawsuit

5 Things You Should Know Before Filing A Civil Lawsuit

If you’re planning on filing a civil suit and are seeking justice, heading to court may be the best option. Although you may want to file a civil suit, it’s important to be prepared in advance. Before filing, there are a few essential facts that you need to understand.

1. Knowing You’re Working with a Bad Lawyer

If you don’t hire a good lawyer then you can’t expect to win the case if the person representing you isn’t prepared or skilled at their job. Common red flags that you’re working with a bad lawyer is if they charge you a lot for a consultation, if they have a bad attitude, or if they can’t provide you with references.

2. Differences Between Civil, Common, Tort, and Criminal Law

Civil law involves non-violent crimes, whereas court cases define common law. Criminal law involves violent crimes and tort law is conflated with civil law. Civil law can also include cases where the plaintiff is injured or has death or property damage.

3. What is Required When Suing the Other Party

It’s important to know what to expect and what’s required when suing the other person. You’ll need to fill out several forms and also give the defendant notice in advance. Failing to notify the other individual can result in having the case thrown out. Knowing the statute of limitations is also necessary, which can give the defendant a strong argument.

4. The Defendant Pays Money Rather Than Serves Time

When filing a civil suit, you can’t expect the defendant to serve time in jail when seeking justice for their actions. Instead, they’ll end up paying damages to you if your attorney can prove that your injury or loss is due to their actions.

5. The Case Can Be Settled Outside of the Courtroom

Many civil cases are often settled outside of the courtroom by both parties with settlement negotiations that take place before the civil case is filed. You may want to consider settling if you’re happy with the amount of money that is offered to you by the defendant to avoid spending additional time in court. You can end up saving time and money if you can negotiate a fair rate that you’ll be paid.

The Ins and Outs of a Civil Lawsuit

The Ins and Outs of a Civil Lawsuit

How Does a Civil Lawsuit Work?

Civil lawsuits emerge out of disagreements between people, business, and other entities like the government. Generally speaking, civil lawsuits follow four significant steps; pleadings, discovery, trial, and a possible appeal. Keep in mind that not all lawsuits will go to trial.  

Pleadings

To capture each party’s side, every lawsuit begins with pleadings. Litigation will begin once the plaintiff files a complaint with the court. The complaint will then be normally delivered to the defendant. Within the complaint, the document will explain the plaintiff’s reason for taking legal action. The defendant will then have a deadline to answer the complaint and provide their side of the story.

Discovery

The longest part of a civil lawsuit is the discovery. Discovery begins as soon as the lawsuit is filed and will continue until right before the trial.  During discovery, the parties will gather facts and issues about the case by asking the opposing parties and third parties.

Information is also gathered by interrogatories (formal written questions)m requesting documents, and by conducting depositions. Dispositions are often used during trial to show inconsistencies or credibility of the witness. A claim or defense often requires support from witnesses to either support an argument or explain technical information.

Trial

If the case makes it to trial, each party will present evidence in front of a jury and/or judge that supports their claim or defense. Before the trail starts, each party will provide the judge with a “brief” that outlines both the arguments and evidence that will be used in the trial. During the actual trial, each party will present an opening statement and the present their evidence such as calling a witness or introducing a document. After one party calls a witness, the opposing side is allowed to cross-examined the witness.

When both parties have presented their evidence, each party will provide closing statements. The court will then as the jury to deliberate until they reach a decision or verdict.

Appeal

If a party is not happy with the result, they may appeal. When a party appeals, the case will go to higher court to review. The parties will present their arguments in briefs which will then be sent to the appellate court. The purpose of the appellate court is to determine if the law was correctly applied in the trial court. The court typically only reviews the case for legal error and unless under unusual circumstances will not override the jury’s decision or verdict. If the appellate courts find that was an error, the appellate court can either reverse the verdict or order the court to begin a new trial.

Alternatives to Litigation

Alternatives to litigation help save time and money. However, they don’t always result in a complete resolution of the dispute. Three alternatives to litigation include settlement, mediation, and arbitration.

A settlement is a cost-effective alternative to trial.  A settlement can be discussed at any time by any party.

Mediation is when an unbiased third party member helps the parties agree on settlements. The mediator will meet with both parties and discuss the strengths and weaknesses of the case. The mediator will point out risks and talk about how the risks may affect their goals.

Lastly, attribution is when the parties selected an unbiased third party to resolve the dispute for the, Both the parties will presents evidence and the arbitrator will decide which party wins. The process is more casual than a formal trial and is usually done privately.

What Legal Rights Do Undocumented Immigrants Have?

What Legal Rights Do Undocumented Immigrants Have?

A common assertion is that if you reside in the United States illegally, you do not have constitutional rights. Although this is a common assertion, it could not be farther from the truth. Besides a few exceptions including, voting, running for president or Congress, the United States Constitutions guarantees many of the same civil right and liberties to both citizens and non-citizens.

 

It is estimated that over 11 million people are living in the United States illegally. The majority of these undocumented immigrants are unaware of what legal protections they are guaranteed. In an effort to spread awareness both attorneys and immigration rights advocates have hosted “Know Your Rights” workshops.

 

These workshops occur all around the country and help undocumented immigrants know their rights as well as what they can do when they are confronted with immigration enforcement.

 

The legal protections of illegal immigrants can be found in the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. Within this clause, it states that anyone is assured the same protection of the law, this includes both U.S. citizens and any person living within the jurisdiction.

 

This means as long as you live in the United States, whether you are documented or not, you have the right to be protected by the laws as well as have fair treatment in the judicial system.

 

The 1973 High Court’s decision of Almeida-Sanchez v. United States helps to enforce this principle.  The decision stated that all non-citizens, despite their legal status, are protected by criminally related amendments of the Constitution. This includes legal protection for search and seizure, trial by jury, self-incrimination, and freedom of expression.

 

Undocumented immigrants are also protected under the Fourth Amendment, which protects people against unreasonable searches and seizures. Unless an undocumented immigrant gives consent or law enforcement have a warrant to search the house, they can deny entry to law enforcement.

 

Equal protection was expanded in 1982 due to the Plyler v. Doe decision. This case was a “landmark decision” that stated that public education could not be denied due to those who are illegal immigrants. The court decided that the Texas law violated the Equal Protection clause and therefore all children are entitled to public education.

 

These are just a few of the legal rights that undocumented immigrants possess. Besides a select few exceptions, undocumented citizens are entitled to many of the same rights as United States citizens.  

 

Abogado Aly Civil Law:

Civil Law consists a group of laws that govern disputes between individuals in such areas as contracts, property, and family law. Civil Law is anything that is not criminal or public law. There are breach of contract cases where one makes a deal, signs a contract and does not follow the contract obligations that were laid out. There are consumer rights cases where you are protected as a consumer from businesses trying to take advantage of you. Lastly, there are construction law cases with lien matters, landlord-tenant matters and more.

At the offices of Abogado Aly, each attorney has their own specialization; however, they meet everyday to ensure that each case is handled by a group of professionals with varying specializations so that all attorneys at this office can look at each case from multiple angles. Adriana Rodriguez’s specialization is in Civil Law, and the aim of this blog is to inform readers on Civil Law in the news today.

For more information about our office, check out AbogadoAly.com

The attorneys at Abogado Aly, PLLC come with the greatest care and compassion for their clients. Adriana Rodriguez is no stranger to that. As a native Houstonian, she was raised in Houston’s own East End District. She attended the University of Texas at Austin and obtained her Bachelors Degree in Government. After graduating, Ms. Rodriguez attended South Texas College Law of Downtown Houston where she obtained her Law Degree. As a young child, Ms. Rodriguez grew up watching friends and family struggle with constant difficulties directly stemming from their legal issues. After witnessing these struggles as a child, she knew that she wanted to become an attorney to help people with their legal troubles. Now an Attorney at the Law Office of Abogado Aly, Ms. Rodriguez wants to help you understand your rights and keep you from being taken advantage from. She primarily deals with issues of family and immigration; however, all of the attorneys and staff at the offices of Abogado Aly assist each other on all of the cases within the office. Ms. Rodriguez understands that family cases can be tricky and difficult, but she is there to find the best possible solution for both parties in this time of need. If a couple gets married in another county but establishes Harris County as their residence in the three months prior to filing the divorce, they can still have Ms. Rodriguez represent them for their divorce cases.
Andrea Rodriguez | Attorney at Abogado Aly Law PLLC