Watch more How to Understand Legal Issues videos: http://www.howcast.com/guides/39-How-to-Understand-Legal-Issues Subscribe to Howcast's YouTube Channel - http://howc.st/uLaHRS Follow these easy steps to sue someone. Howcast uploads the highest quality how-to videos daily! Be sure to check out our playlists for guides that interest you: http://howc.st/ytmainplaylists Subscribe to Howcast's other YouTube Channels: Howcast Health Channel - http://howc.st/HOE3aY Howcast Video Games Channel - http://howc.st/tYKKrk Howcast Tech Channel - http://howc.st/rx9FwR Howcast Food Channel - http://howc.st/umBoJX Howcast Arts & Recreation Channel - http://howc.st/vmB86i Howcast Sports & Fitness Channel - http://howc.st/vKjUjm Howcast Personal Care & Style Channel - http://howc.st/vbbNt3 Howcast empowers people with engaging, useful how-to information wherever, whenever they need to know how. Emphasizing high-quality instructional videos, Howcast brings you experts who provide accurate information in easy-to-follow tutorials on everything from makeup, hairstyling, nail art design, and soccer to parkour, skateboarding, dancing, kissing, and much, much more. Step 1: Decide if you have a good case Determine whether you have a case. You may be upset, but can you prove before a judge or jury that you suffered a serious injury and that the defendant was responsible? If you cannot, then you shouldn't file a lawsuit. Step 2: Find out if you can collect if you win Find out whether the party you want to sue has money, income, or property. If they don't, it will be difficult -- if not impossible -- to collect any money you may be awarded. Tip Try to keep out of court by proposing a settlement to the potential defendant. Avoiding lengthy litigation and lawyers' fees could be a win-win situation for you both. Step 3: Estimate your claim Estimate the size of your claim. If it is larger than the amount allowed in small claims court, find a lawyer to handle your case. Heed the old saying, "A person who acts as their own attorney has a fool for a client." Tip The maximum amount allowed in small claims court can be as high as $15,000 but varies from state to state. Step 4: Name the defendant Find out and provide the full name of your defendant. If you're suing an individual or individuals, it should be obvious. If you're suing a business, you'll want to name the corporation or parent corporation. Step 5: File the complaint File your complaint that describes your claim against the defendant. Steps vary depending on your jurisdiction, but usually you'll have to pay a filing fee, complete some forms, and prepare a summons, which notifies the defendant of your claim. Tip Your local jurisdiction may waive filing fees if you cannot afford them. Check with a lawyer or your local clerk for more information. Step 6: Move to discovery phase Once your defendant responds to your complaint, move to the pretrial discovery phase of the suit, when both the prosecution and the defense share evidence and interview witnesses. Step 7: Attend court and proceed to trial Attend court on the date set by the judge, and proceed to trial, if necessary. If you go to trial, you'll need to present evidence or witnesses to prove your case. Did You Know? On popular TV shows where cases are decided by real judges, the proceedings are not really small claims trials, but agreements of binding arbitration that can't be appealed.
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