Being sued… Now What?
Have you been served with a lawsuit? If so, you may be angry, upset, depressed, hopeless, sad, furious or afraid. It is important to immediately seek legal counsel to understand your options and obligations. Depending on the type of lawsuit, you may have an obligation to immediately take action. First, review the allegations against you. The allegations are typically listed in a document called a Complaint. It is also important to understand the amount of time you have to respond. You may be able to ascertain this information from a document called a Summons. Depending on the type of case, the summons may include notification for you to attend a court hearing.
After reviewing the documents, you received, you should immediately consult with an attorney. An attorney can more thoroughly assess the situation and give you some options for next steps. During the consultation, the attorney may discuss required next steps. They may review pros and cons to handling the case “on your own” or retaining legal counsel. Typically, by consulting with an attorney, people receive helpful information to build their confidence about how to proceed.
There are several strategies that lawyers use to represent clients. Typically, the starting point will be replying to the lawsuit that was filed. The response could include simply answering the allegations and providing defenses. The attorney may ask that the lawsuit be dismissed. At times, it may be appropriate to file a countersuit (suing the party that is suing you). The attorney could also decide to bring other parties into the case. It is important to be familiar with the litigation process and advocate for your rights. Attorneys can assist throughout this process. If a case is pending against you, contact our office, right away, to schedule a consultation.