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Understanding civil litigation - disputes and legal proceedings

Legal books and gavelNavigating civil litigation can be a daunting prospect for individuals and businesses alike. From contractual disputes to personal injury claims, understanding the intricacies of legal proceedings is crucial.

In this article, Fonseca Law offers insights into civil litigation, providing clarity on key concepts and procedures to help you navigate disputes effectively.

What is civil litigation?

Civil litigation encompasses legal disputes between individuals, businesses, or other entities that seek compensation or specific performance rather than criminal sanctions. These disputes can arise in various contexts, including contract breaches, property disputes, personal injury claims, and employment issues.

The civil litigation process

Pre-litigation phase:

Initial consultation: The process typically begins with an initial consultation with a solicitor to discuss the details of the dispute and assess the potential legal options that might be available to you.

Pre-action protocol: In some cases, parties may be required to follow pre-action protocols, which outline steps for exchanging information and attempting to resolve the dispute without litigation.

Issuing proceedings:

Claim form: If informal resolution attempts fail, the claimant may proceed to issue a claim form, outlining the details of the dispute and the relief sought.

Service of documents: The claim form and other relevant documents must be served on the defendant, who then has an opportunity to respond.

Case management:

Allocation to track: The court may allocate the case to a specific track based on its complexity and value, such as the small claims track, fast track, or multi-track.

Case management conference: Parties may attend a case management conference to discuss procedural matters and set timelines for disclosure, witness statements, and trial preparation.

Trial and judgment:

Disclosure: Both parties are required to disclose relevant documents to each other during the disclosure stage.

Witness statements: Witnesses may be called upon to provide written statements outlining their evidence.

Trial: The case proceeds to trial, where evidence is presented, witnesses are examined, and legal arguments are made.

Judgment: The court issues a judgment based on the evidence and legal principles, determining the outcome of the dispute.

Read: Steps to take before filing a civil claim

Legal representation in civil litigation

Having legal representation in civil litigation is highly advisable, as solicitors provide expertise and guidance throughout the process. Fonseca Law offers dedicated solicitors who specialise in civil litigation, providing clients with tailored advice and the very best representation to protect their interests.

Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR)

In many cases, parties may opt for alternative dispute resolution methods, such as mediation or arbitration, to resolve their disputes outside of the courtroom. These methods offer a more collaborative approach to dispute resolution and can often result in faster and more cost-effective outcomes.

Understanding civil litigation is essential for individuals and businesses facing legal disputes. By familiarising yourself with the process and seeking legal guidance from experienced solicitors, you can navigate disputes effectively and achieve favourable outcomes.

Read: What is the difference between civil law and criminal law?

Fonseca Law is committed to assisting clients in Ebbw Vale and the wider areas of South Wales with their civil litigation matters. To learn more about our services or to schedule a consultation, please contact us today. To discuss your situation in detail with our legal experts simply call 01495 303124, e-mail or complete our online enquiry form.