Four Ways to Prepare for Trial

Preparation is the key to success, and this is especially true in the courtroom. However, despite their best intentions, many people who are representing themselves do not know how to prepare for a trial. Do you read a self-help book? Seek the advice of an attorney? Watch old episodes of Matlock? Any of these things […]

How to Draft a Demand Letter

Regardless of whether you or your opponent are interested in settling the case, before proceeding with litigation, always send the defendant a demand letter. Like the name implies, a demand letter is a formal written letter directed to the defendant or defendants outlining the underlying facts of your case, explaining why the law supports your […]

How to Win a Small Claims Case: Know Your Opponent

Apart from a strong case, one of the best weapons you can have at your disposal in a litigation setting is an understanding of psychology. Whether you’re a plaintiff or a defendant, the best advice any experienced lawyer could give you is to understand how your opponent thinks. Knowing his or her motivations and expectations […]

State by State Dog Bite Statute Summary

State by State Dog Bite Statute Summary Dog bites are so common that every state has enacted a statute on how to handle them (and animal attacks in general). Before you file suit, make certain to research your state’s dog bite statute. Most states have adopted a strict liability standard in their dog bite statute, […]

How to Win a Dog Bite Case in Small Claims Court

Have you been bitten by a dog?  If so, you’re not alone- each year over 500,000 people in the US get bit by dogs, and 12 of them die. Not surprisingly, the majority of dog bite victims are children. So what happens if you (or your child) are bitten by your neighbor’s dog, and you’re […]

Is Suing in Small Claims Court Worth the Effort?

Small claims courts are designed to streamline the legal process in order to enable litigants to reach a speedy and inexpensive conclusion to their disputes.  However, that doesn’t mean that it isn’t a royal pain in the ass.  Before determining whether to seek justice against someone who wronged you, first ask yourself the following questions: 1. […]

How to win a Defamation Case in Small Claims Court

“Defamation” is an umbrella term for a reputational damage claim, and is defined as the issuance of a false statement about another person which causes that person harm. There are two tortious acts that fall under the defamation umbrella: libel and slander. Libel describes the making of defamatory statements in a fixed medium, such as […]

Federal Court vs. State Court

[column size=”1-2″ last=”0″] The Judicial Branch has two court systems: federal and state. While each hears certain types of cases, neither is completely independent of the other. The two systems often interact and share the goal of fairly handling legal issues.  The U.S. Constitution created a governmental structure known as federalism that calls for the […]

How Bankruptcy Works

[heading]How Bankruptcy Works[/heading] Consumers considering personal bankruptcy have two choices: Chapter 7 Bankruptcy Chapter 7 allows you to effectively eliminate (discharge) most if not all of your unsecured debts without having to pay them. This includes credit card debt, medical debt, and personal loans. Unfortunately, not all consumers qualify for a Chapter 7, and have to […]

Civil Law vs. Criminal Law

Learn the important differences between Civil Law and Criminal Law. Definition and Purpose Civil Law:  Civil Law deals with the disputes between individuals, organizations, or between the two, in which compensation is awarded to the victim.  The purpose of civil law is to help resolve disputes between individuals, organizations, or the government. Criminal Law:  Criminal law is […]

Dealing With Police

Few things are more stressful and terrifying as being charged with a crime.  Fortunately, our Constitution gives us all certain rights when dealing with the police.  Unfortunately, 99% of the population are utterly ignorant of what those rights are, or how they operate.  Here’s a brief summary of the most important rights, which can help […]

What is Pain & Suffering?

As discussed in the article on personal injury damages, “pain and suffering” is a key component of compensatory damages.  But what is your pain and suffering really worth? Types of Pain and Suffering “Pain and Suffering” damages come in two flavors: mental and physical. Physical Pain and Suffering.   This is pain and discomfort resulting from […]

Piercing the Corporate Veil

If you are considering filing a complaint against a corporation or limited liability company, you may want to ask yourself whether you can also name the company’s shareholders, directors or officers as defendants as well. [column size=”1-3″ last=”0″][/column] [column size=”2-3″ last=”1″] Generally, the law encourages business ventures, risk-taking, and entrepreneurial activity by the creation of […]

Jurisdiction: What is it, who has it, and how do you get it?

Types of Jurisdiction Earlier in this article, we introduced the notion of jurisdiction. All courts have two types of jurisdiction: subject matter jurisdiction and personal jurisdiction. Let’s go over how these types of jurisdiction work for federal courts. Subject Matter Jurisdiction Subject matter jurisdiction concerns the area of law over which a court has authority. […]

Advantages to Representing Yourself in Court

Does someone who serves as his own lawyer have a fool for a client?  That really depends on how you look at it.  Although the court system can (and is) more than a little intimidating, there are some distinct advantages to representing yourself- advantages that attorneys do not share. 1.  Leeway:  Attorneys can expect little […]

Horror Story 24: The Giggles

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What is Quantum Meruit?

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Handling Objections

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What is Small Claims Court?

Small claims courts are courts of limited jurisdiction- meaning that they only handle disputes that don’t involve large amounts of money. Each state has a threshold amount that falls within the jurisdiction of their small claims court- to find out what the amount is in your state, click here. In some cases, a plaintiff must […]

Top Ten Tips for Your Day in Court

1. Don’t Miss Your Court Date. Court is not an appointment that can be missed or rescheduled. If you miss your court date (including being late) for a criminal case or contempt matter, a warrant may be issued for your arrest. If the hearing is not a criminal matter, you will likely lose the case […]

What is a Motion and how do you Make one?

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The Art of the Settlement

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Discovery Tactics 101

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What is Good Service?

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Is it Relevant?

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Collecting a Judgment

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Personal Jurisdiction and the Out-of-State Defendent

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When you Really Need a Lawyer

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Structuring the Complaint

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How to call a Witnesses

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