What Does the Litigation Process Actually Look Like in Practice?

We’re sure everyone’s seen this scenario in a movie or TV show: The main character is either completing a monotonous task or has gotten some great news. Then they’ll get a knock on their door from someone saying, “You’ve been served.”

Unfortunately, they have been served with a lawsuit and will need to appear in court. Civil cases can happen at any time, whether you were at fault or not.

However, if you don’t know the litigation process, it may be challenging to understand what’s happening. Don’t worry; we’ll discuss all you need to know about case litigation. Read on to learn more.

Filing The Suit

If you’re filing a lawsuit, one of the first things you need to do is hire a lawyer. Since they’re experts in legal jargon, lawyers can help you correctly file your lawsuit.

In your claim, your attorney will:

  • Name the defendant
  • List the infractions
  • Ask for a specific amount in damages

Your lawsuit will also notify the judge if you want a jury trial. Where it gets filed depends on the type of claim and the number of damages asked for.

Defendants Response

When you file a lawsuit against another person or business, they have a set time limit in which they should reply. Usually, it’s about three weeks. Their answer will determine their side in the suit.

The defendant may also take the opportunity to file a counterclaim against the plaintiff, stating some mental or emotional distress. However, if the defendant doesn’t answer the summons, the verdict will be granted in the plaintiff’s favor.


The discovery process is the lost part of any lawsuit. Both parties exchange information and ask other relevant witnesses about specific details of the case.

However, there are strict guidelines for how attornies can go about receiving this information. Each piece of evidence gets added to a formal list of questions.

But lawyers can also use depositions to make the case in the client’s favor. Depositions are recorded interviews between an attorney and the parties involved. Their primary purpose is to show discrepancies between witness accounts.


If one party feels like the suit doesn’t warrant a lengthy trial, they may file a motion. It’s an action that provides some relief in the case, such as dismissal or recess, with a written legal reason attached to it.

The other party may respond to a filed motion within a specific timeframe. However, a judge may ask for an oral argument to hear why they should grant the motion.


There are some instances when the judge may not reward your lawsuit with a trial. However, if they believe it warrants a trial, you can opt for a settlement to avoid going through that procedure.

A settlement is a monetary amount assigned to your case in which the defendant agrees to pay the plaintiff. If you’re looking for helping your next settlement case, visit

Here Is The Litigation Process

As you can see, the litigation process comes with various steps. So if you ever file or receive a lawsuit, you now know how to navigate each area. Hire a great lawyer and get the outcome you rightfully deserve.

To learn more about the justice system and different lawsuits, visit our blog for related content.

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