Civil litigation is the process in which civil matters are resolved in a court of law. Civil matters can be described as situations dealing with relationships between people, for money damages or some other non-criminal sanction. Civil laws are made by legislators, not through decisions rendered by judges, and are contained in a book of statutes. The Civil litigation proceedings are governed by these statutes.
By definition, the civil litigation process must start with filing a lawsuit in a court that has subject matter jurisdiction to hear your specific type of case. An example would include probate court or family law courts. Once the case is filed, the civil litigation process requires the other party to be served and given time and the opportunity to respond to the allegations (referred to as the answer to the complaint).
The basics of the civil litigation process include:
- Initial pleadings stage
- Answers and counterclaims
- Pretrial pleadings and motions
Civil litigation lawyers are often trial attorneys that handle a variety of practice areas. It is often advisable to seek an attorney that has specific experience with your type of case.