Archive for the ‘Civil Law’ Category

» Civil Law: Understanding the Basics of Civil Procedure On Sunday, December 28th, 2008

Statistically speaking, odds are that the average person will end up involved in a lawsuit – either as a plaintiff or defendant – at least one time during the course of his or her life. (This does not include being involved in a divorce case; rather, this refers to the statistical probability that a person will be involved in a lawsuit involving a personal injury or contract dispute at some point during his or her lifetime.)

Because it is likely that a person will end up involved in a lawsuit for one reason or another during his or her lifetime, it does behoove a person to have a basic understanding of what is known as civil procedure. Through this article a basic overview is provided of the essential elements of civil procedure. With that noted, when it comes to civil procedure, if a person has any specific questions in regard to civil procedure or if a person finds his or her self involved in a lawsuit, that individual is best served by seeking legal assistance immediately. This article is not intended to provide legal advice to any individual that is facing or involved in a lawsuit.

The most important factor that a layperson must keep in mind when it comes to civil law and civil procedure is something known amongst lawyers as the “statute of limitations.” In simple terms the statute of limitations refers to the deadline by which a lawsuit must be filed. For example, if a person is involved in an accident, that individual must file suit for injuries or damages sustained as a result of that accident with a period of time set forth by the statutes of the state in which he or she lives. If the individual fails to bring a suit within that time frame, that person normally will be prevented from filing suit at any time in the future.

The same holds true if there is a breach of contract. If a person wants to sure because of a breach of contract, that individual needs to file suit within a specified period of time or he or she will be forever banned (in most cases) from bringing suit.

As was mentioned a moment ago it is important to keep in mind that the deadlines for filing suit vary from state to state. However, it is commonplace for the statute of limitations pertaining to personal injury cases to have a lawsuit filing deadline of two years from the date of the accident. In many states, a breach of contract lawsuit must be brought in three years from the date of the contract breach. But, again, these time frames do vary from state to state. If you have a question about the statute of limitations in your own state, you must contact a lawyer to make sure that your own rights fully are protected in this regard.

There are exceptions to the general laws governing time frames in which cases are filed. For example, if a person is injured as a minor child, in most states he or she has a certain period of time after he or she turns 18 to file a lawsuit. But, again, the laws do vary from state to state.

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