When you suffer physical or financial loss from someone else’s actions, the first step is to file a civil lawsuit. While a civil case cannot restore your health, it can entitle you to monetary damages to get back on your feet after an unfortunate incident.
Here’s the catch. Civil law can be notoriously complex and fraught with confusion. Unless you have a law degree, representing yourself can have serious pitfalls. Instead, consider hiring a civil litigation attorney for the best possible outcome.
So, in what cases does a civil litigation attorney in Utah take on? We’re here to answer your questions.
What Does a Civil Litigation Lawyer Do?
Civil litigation attorneys help clients understand their rights and analyze the strength of their potential claims. A lawyer will work with you from start to finish, ensuring your case has all the proper support. They’ll also handle all the associated paperwork, which can pile up.
But like people, you might be confused about the type of cases a civil or general litigation lawyer handles. Let’s walk you through a few.
1. Contract Disputes
A breach of contract transpires when a person or entity fails to fulfill their contractual obligations. Typically, they include:
- Controversies between landlords and tenants
- Non-delivery of charged shipments
- Violation or non-completion of a business deal
- Infringement of a business arrangement
- Disputes over land sales
- Sale of defective products
In these cases, the plaintiff may seek compensation for any damages resulting from the mistrust or breach. For example, if your landlord is trying to evict you from a rental without proper notice, you may sue them for harassment. A skilled civil litigation attorney can analyze the specifics of your case and help you pursue your losses.
Personal injury torts are the most common cases in civil litigation, wherein one party claims that the other has injured their person, property, reputation, or the like. The plaintiff may proceed to seek compensation for the damages, including repairs and medical expenses.
Most tort claims are classed into three categories:
- Negligence: The defendant inflicts involuntary or accidental harm on the plaintiff.
- Intentional Wrongdoing: The defendant was aware of their actions and purposefully harmed the plaintiff.
- Strict Liability: The defendant was obligated to guarantee security but failed.
A few examples of personal injury torts are:
- Assault and battery
- False imprisonment
- Animal attacks
- Car or bicycle accidents
- Invasion of privacy
- Emotional distress
- Medical malpractice
- Slip and fall accidents
- Injuries resulting from defective products
Dealing with a personal injury tort can be difficult, especially if you’re still in recovery. A civil litigation attorney will take over your case and handle all the formalities, so you can focus on finding your feet again.
3. Class-Action Lawsuits
Also known as ‘representative action’, class-action lawsuits are legal proceedings in which one or more plaintiffs file a claim on behalf of a larger group (known as the ‘class’). These may be a group of customers, employees, investors, or patients with a similar legal claim against one or more defendants.
Class-action claims may involve:
- A business that exposed consumers to dangerous substances
- Defective goods that have caused multiple injuries and deaths
- A person or business bent on defrauding multiple people
You could compare class-action lawsuits to personal injury claims, the only difference being the ‘plaintiff’ in a class-action is a group of people.
Still, these claims are complex and may end in massive compensation payouts. Hence, it always helps to work with a skilled civil litigation attorney specializing in class-action claims. They’ll know exactly how to approach your case to maximize your chances of success.
4. Land Disputes
Land disputes can arise when there is a conflict over who owns a property or the location of property lines. For example, you inherit a piece of land after someone in your family dies. However, the authorities discover that the land was promised to someone else in a will. Worse still, your relative didn’t leave a will, causing you to fight over the land.
Again, let’s say your neighbor built a fence, but you think it’s on or over your property lines. You get a copy of your plot map and see that your neighbor has infringed on your land. Under such circumstances, you can hire a civil litigation lawyer to represent your interests and defend your rights in court.
5. Business Disputes
Business disputes often cover various events. Two or more owners/shareholders may disagree on the company’s prospects. Or one owner might feel left out of the decision-making process. Sometimes, these disputes can end in a deadlock- sending the situation snowballing out of control.
It’s important to consult with a civil litigation lawyer and have them review your business partnership agreement. Doing this will help them understand the nuances of your relationship and propose a satisfactory solution.
6. Equitable Claims
By definition, equitable relief is a court-granted remedy requiring the defendant to either act or refrain from acting. It is almost always incurred in cases involving a breach of contract or intellectual theft.
Equitable relief is different from a legal claim. It is usually employed to prompt/prevent action in cases that need more than a simple resolution or monetary compensation. Examples include situations where the plaintiff seeks a temporary restraining order or an injunction to stop something (destruction of property, improper land transfer, solicitation of customers).
The Bottom Line
Civil litigation is complex across the board. What’s more, it’s incredibly diverse with plenty of subcategories. Your best bet is to seek legal counsel from a civil litigation attorney. And now that you know the different cases civil attorneys deal with, you should have no trouble determining when to send for a lawyer!
Have you or a loved one been involved in a civil lawsuit? Are you looking for a lawyer to help navigate your case? The team at Henriksen & Henriksen will be happy to help you out. Our civil litigation attorneys in Utah are well-versed in the legal system and will analyze your case, no questions asked. We never hesitate to go the distance for our clients and fight for their rights. For more information, give us a call today!