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Litigation is a procedure to resolve a dispute arising out of a variety of factual circumstances.

Normally, it is referred to as lawsuit and consists of some form of court action.

In any lawsuit, there is always a plaintiff who files a written complaint or petition with the Court. A plaintiff is the person who started a lawsuit.

Then, there is the other party called the defendant. The defendant responds and the case proceeds through trial procedures and ultimately is resolved by a trial or motion.

Trial can either be by

  • the Court that is before a judge or
  • jury which is a group of citizens chosen at large from the community.

To commence a case, a summons is issued by the Court Clerk.

It is important never to ignore any summons served on you. Consult a lawyer or take the appropriate action as stated in the summons where applicable.

If you do not do so, the Court may enter a default judgment against you in your absence on the hearing date.


When a party wins in Court the result is confirmed by way of a judgment.

Normally the losing party will pay the judgment voluntarily to clear the judgment from the public record. A judgment can adversely affect a person's credit rating.

Where the judgment is not paid voluntarily, there are the enforcement of judgments and orders which can be executed for collection of money unpaid on the judgment.

Among the more common execution procedures are obtaining prohibitory order, writ of seizure and sale, bankruptcy and garnishee proceedings such as bank accounts and order of committal.

However, there exist a series of limitations that enable a debtor to protect funds sufficient to provide the "necessities of life," while making payment against the unpaid money on the judgment simultaneously.

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