What is Litigation & What Does it Involve?

If you’re looking for litigation lawyers in Sydney, the term ‘litigation’ may be a legal term you’re vaguely familiar with, but what does it actually mean? Far from being a term that describes dramatic courtroom battles as seen on television legal dramas, the process of litigation itself is actually a complex and nuanced one, so understanding this term and its place among legal terms can be helpful for any future legal matters. This article will take a look at what litigation actually means and its role in the legal system. 

What is Litigation?

To put it simply, litigation occurs when somebody wants to enforce or defend their legal rights in a specified context. To unpack that definition further, you can say that litigation is the beginning of a legal dispute between two or more parties. Compensation is usually the goal of litigation lawyers in Sydney rather than criminal punishment. Monetary damages or performance of some legal right are common forms of compensation sought through litigation. 

Does Litigation Only Take Place in the Courtroom?

There can be attempts to resolve a dispute before litigation actually proceeds to court. This is known as pre-lawsuit litigation. This type of resolution is often favoured amongst litigation lawyers in Sydney as it’s the least expensive and time-consuming method for resolving a dispute between two or more parties. 

This process typically involves the plaintiff making demands and attempting a resolution with the defendant through a mediator. If the defendant does not accept the terms of resolution and the plaintiff decides to continue to defend their legal rights, the issue proceeds to litigation in the courtroom. 

What Happens During the Litigation Process? 

Not all litigious disputes proceed to trial in a courtroom. In fact, there can be long periods of back and forth between representatives of the parties involved in the dispute. This can sometimes take months or even years, and usually involves communication between attorneys exchanging legal demands on behalf of their clients. 

Settlement is usually the goal of lawyers at this time, as if a settlement between parties cannot be reached, the issue then goes to trial, thus extending an already lengthy litigation period. Even after a successful trial, parties involved can make an appeal which has the potential to drag proceedings out even longer. 

Why Would Someone Choose Litigation?

Oftentimes, a person’s reasoning for litigation is contingent on their emotions at the time. Legal matters rapidly become emotional, and litigation is sometimes a step that is employed by people to set a precedent that they aren’t a ‘pushover’ or to prevent similar claims being made against them in the future.

There are also genuine reasons where proceeding to litigation is the logical next step, such as defending your intellectual property rights or pursuing employment injury compensation against a sole trader. Litigation lawyers in Sydney can help steer you in the right direction when it comes to litigation and ensure it is genuinely the right move for you.

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