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What Should I Do if I am Sued?

Litigation is a common occurrence. According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, a total of about 40 million lawsuits are filed each year in the United States. Of these, approximately 10 million are federal court cases, while 30 million are filed in state courts. With so many disputes, it is likely that you might be involved in a lawsuit at some point in your life. When you get served with court paperwork to notify you of a lawsuit, you may be frightened and confused. Do not worry because you can take control of the situation and achieve a successful outcome with help from an experienced lawyer.

Review the Complaint

The first thing to do is review the lawsuit to determine the exact cause of action. You want to make sure you understand the dispute so you can take steps to resolve the case. In most instances, the lawsuit will not be a complete surprise because you will likely already have tried to resolve the matter between you and the other party. When your communication or negotiation failed, then the other party decided to take legal action.

Take Action Quickly

There is no time to waste once you receive notice of a lawsuit. Do not ignore the situation because that will only prevent you from taking the time you need to prepare your side of the case. Hire an attorney with experience in litigation of civil cases. While it may be worrisome, try to remain calm so you can make critical decisions that might affect the outcome of the case. Do not speak to the other party regarding the case once they file a lawsuit. Instead, make sure that all of your communication goes through your attorneys.

Gather Documentation

In every dispute, there is data that supports your claim. You will want to start to gather and protect the data so that you can provide proof in the case. Keep records that pertain to the matter, and do not get rid of important information. Some of the things that may help to prove your case include communication between you and the other party through emails and texts. This information can be more difficult to collect as time goes by, so it is imperative that you find this data as soon as possible. Depending on the nature of the dispute, you may require photos, medical records, receipts, and additional documentation. Your attorney will give you additional details to help you with the type of information that will be relevant in your case.

Prepare and File a Response

You have a limited time to file a response to the lawsuit with the court. Make sure that you do not miss that deadline because it could limit your ability to adequately fight the case. Your attorney will get your input to prepare and file a response to the case. Make notes that are significant to the situation so you can explain the details to your attorney with as much detail as possible. Work with a skilled attorney to guide the entire process. Your attorney will handle all of the legal issues, answer your questions, and represent you throughout the process.

If you were sued, it is critical to talk to an attorney as soon as possible. Contact our legal team at Moen Sheehan Meyer, Ltd. for a free case consultation online or call us at (608) 784-8310.

Published August 17, 2020
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