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The world of law can be conceptually difficult to understand. It helps to have some basic knowledge of the types of legal assistance out there. Let’s take a look at a common branch of law civil litigation.

What is Civil Litigation?

Civil litigation is when there is a legal dispute between two or more parties. Usually, one party is requesting a financial response or some type of closure from the other party. The dispute does not involve any criminal issue, it is non-criminal law. Some examples of civil litigation are breach of contract, dealership/manufacturer disputes, contested partnership of a business or employees that may have a workplace claim.

Why Use Civil Litigation?

If you have an issue that is not criminal in nature, civil litigation can help you solve a problem and get a result.

The Process of Civil Litigation

Step One: The “demand” letter. Usually, a letter, outlining the person’s demands, is written to the opposing party. The letter serves as a request to the other person to pay any outstanding debts so legal action will not be needed.

Step Two: Lawsuit (Also called Statement Of Claim.) If the person receiving the letter does not respond, a lawsuit or a defense is drafted. The lawsuit, or defense, will state the story of how the dispute began, and what (and why) the conclusion should be.  If you want to argue this situation, you can put an application forward to the court to argue the situation.

Step Three: Evidence is gathered. This is where parties must gather all documents, digital files, and photos as evidence. Then, both parties exchange the evidence with each other. Under oath, the parties are allowed to interview each other.

Step Four: Motions: These are formal requests to a judge. Motions can happen with or without the other person. Those involved are able to consent or oppose the motion, and give reasons. There can be legal costs if motions are challenged.

Step Five: Mediation. Often, the court requires each party to have a pre-trial, a form of mediation. During this time, both parties present their case in front of a judge who gives feedback on the case. There can also be settlement discussions to resolve the issue. If there is no settlement, the case goes to trial in front of a different judge. In some places, mediation is to be done with a private mediator before going before a judge.

Step Six: Trial. This is where each side presents their case to a judge, who makes a final decision for one of the parties.

If you feel that you may have a civil litigation claim, contact us at Minhas Lawyers today to discuss your case!

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Minhas Lawyers LLP is a multi-practice law firm based in Mississauga. We advise and represent clients across various segments and practice areas.

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