What is Civil Litigation?

by Shaista Meeha

What is Civil Litigation?

Civil Litigation is legal proceedings that involves disputes which relate to non-criminal stream of actions in law i.e. the process of resolving a legal dispute between two or more parties (individuals or business entities) who seek compensation for damages incurred or performances that were not delivered.

Civil Litigation encompasses a wide range of legal subjects and aims at resolving but is not limited to the following: family law disputes, maintenance, court custody cases, disputes between individuals and credit card companies, disputes involving landlords and tenants, breach of contract, divorces, employment and labour, environmental law, Insurance law, medical malpractice, personal injury, property law, education law, real estate, anti-trust laws and workmen’s compensation.

Once it has been determined in which court a matter is going to be referred to for civil litigation, it is necessary to decide whether to proceed by way of trial (action), or by way of a motion (application). If a dispute of fact is anticipated, it is generally best to proceed with an action and if no material dispute of fact is anticipated, then motion proceedings will follow.

In motion/application proceedings the matter is determined based on the papers i.e. submissions are made by way of sworn affidavits, and generally no oral evidence is allowed. The parties are the Applicant and the Respondent.

In an action procedure the parties are the Plaintiff and the Defendant, there are various stages in an action procedure which are as follows: Investigation, Pre-action steps (letter of demand and settlement), summons and particulars of claim, exchange of pleadings, plea (together with counterclaim), replication (defence to counterclaim), case management, pre-trial preparation, discovery of documents, request for trial particulars, witness statements, expert reports and meeting of experts, pre-trial conference, trial preparation, trial, appeals and reviews if any.

Litigation attorneys, also known as litigators, represent plaintiffs/applicants and defendants/Respondents in civil lawsuits.

Clients are advised to seek the services of a professional from inception of a matter to avoid frustration, loss of valuable time and money.

At CNG attorneys our motto is to see you succeed!

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CNG Attorneys Inc. is a full service law firm based in Durban. We’re a B-BBEE Level 1 Contributor and an all female owned entity.

Our attorneys are experts in multiple areas of law in order to serve our client's every need. Our mission is to see our clients succeed, as they are our number one priority.
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