Understand The Role And Responsibilities of a Litigation Solicitor
Litigation attorneys also referred as litigators or trial lawyers represent plaintiffs and defendants in civil lawsuits. They manage all phases of the litigation from the investigation, pleadings, and discovery through the pre-trial, trial, settlement, and appeal processes. Responsibilities of litigation solicitors in London can differ based on the nature of the dispute, the experience of the attorney, and whether he’s representing the plaintiff or defendant. Education and Training A litigation lawyer must have achieved her juris doctor degree from a law school accredited by the respective Bar Association. This means first earning a four-year degree in addition to three additional years in law school. Attorneys must then pass the bar exam and be admitted to the bar in the state in which they wish to practice. It’s often helpful to be admitted to the bar in neighboring states as well for a wider potential client base and increased job opportunities. Initial Case Assessment and Investigation Litigation solicitors in London in a plaintiff’s case often conduct an initial case investigation to determine if enough evidence exists to warrant filing a lawsuit. In a defendant’s case, he’ll assess what evidence exists to defend a potential or existing suit against his client. The investigation process can include locating witnesses, taking witness statements, gathering documents, interviewing the client, and investigating the facts leading to the dispute. Litigation attorneys often engage in pre-litigation settlement discussions to attempt to resolve the matter before a lawsuit is actually filed. Drafting Pleadings A variety of pleadings and motions must be filed with the court on behalf of both the plaintiff or the defendant in a lawsuit. Plaintiff attorneys will draft and file a summons and complaint to initiate the lawsuit, and defense attorneys typically draft answers and sometimes counterclaims in response to that initial complaint. Defense attorneys collaborate with their clients to investigate the allegations of the lawsuit in order to formulate these responses. Litigation attorneys might also draft a variety of pretrial motions, including motions to strike or dismiss evidence or to change the venue or location of the trial. They might file motions for judgments rendered on the basis of the pleadings so no court appearance is necessary. The Discovery Procedure The discovery portion of a lawsuit involves the exchange of all relevant information between the parties. Litigation attorneys employ a variety of discovery devices to gain this information. These methods can include interrogatories, a series of written questions that the other party to the lawsuit must answer-also in writing and under penalty of perjury. It can include depositions which involve oral questions typically presented by the other attorney in an office setting, again answered under oath. Other common methods of discovery include requests for documents that are in the possession of the other party as well as requests for admission-asking the other party to admit to or deny certain aspects of the case in writing and under oath. Litigation solicitors in London also draft and argue discovery-related motions including motions to compel the other side to respond to discovery requests if they haven’t done so within a specified time period.