When you’re sued and you want to avoid a default judgment, one of the first things you must do is respond. You can respond in a motion or pleading that essentially says, “Yo! I’m here, and I don’t agree with everything you say,” or “You might be right, but I’m not liable,” or “You can’t sue me because you done screwed everything up.” The first is an answer. The second is an answer and affirmative defenses. The third is a motion to dismiss. Here, we’re concerned with the second, the answer and affirmative defense.
Litigation documents are not the first thing the average person thinks about when they hear the term “legal documents”. Wills, deeds, powers of attorney, tax forms, come to mind first. These are legal documents, but they’re not for the purposes of litigation.
Litigation documents are less formulaic and more intimidating than these. Their purpose is to move a lawsuit along. In that sense, they’re more powerful than documents written on pre-printed forms.
Litigation is fluid, and you can file many documents at any stage. However, this list will make you aware of available litigation documents and when they are most commonly filed.
Understanding the litigation process will help you formulate the basic strategies you need to put up an effective fight. These simple strategies are designed to give you an idea of things to look out for at each stage of litigation.
It’s a mistake to answer a complaint too early. Are you making unnecessary admissions in the answer? Have you found all available affirmative defenses? Wouldn’t it be better to get the claim dismissed? Give yourself time to prepare before answering a complaint. A court order tells you it’s time.
Few people enjoy being in court, but sometimes you have to go there. Someone marked up your car and wouldn’t pay. You were punched in the nose for no reason. A company sued you for a debt. You’re facing bankruptcy or deportation. As the gap between the super wealthy and the rest of us grows, more and […]