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Terminology in the Civil Courts
Claimant - This is the individual or business which is
bringing the claim
Defendant - This is the individual or business which is
defending the claim…read more

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What is a civil case?
Civil court cases arise where an individual or a business believe
their rights have been infringed in some way.
Different types of civil claims include;
A business may claim that they are owed money - contract law
An individual may wish to claim compensation for injuries
suffered in a road traffic accident - the tort of negligence
The owner of a house may wish to prevent another person
walking on their land and seek an injunction - the tort of
trespass to land
This is not a complete list of civil cases; in fact there are
hundreds of different types of claims which may be brought in
the civil courts.…read more

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The first step in a civil action
Taking someone to court is usually the last option in a
civil dispute. Usually businesses and individuals try to
resolve their problem through negotiation. For
example, if you buy a faulty DVD from the shop you
would take the DVD back and usually they will replace
it. In other situations you may write to the other side to
complain, the majority of civil disputes are resolved at
this stage and there is no need for a court hearing. This
will often lead to a compromise being reached and once
again there is no need for a court hearing.…read more

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Advice from a solicitor
If the other side in a dispute will not settle the claim
through negotiation then the aggrieved person must
decide if they wish to take the case any further. The
usual next stage is to consult a solicitor, they will then
write to the other side on your behalf. However when
the other side will not negotiate or compromise you
may need to start a civil claim. The first thing to check
before taking someone to court is do they have the
money to pay you should you win the case? If they
don't then you may be wasting your time and money!…read more

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Taking a Civil Case to Court
Going to court means expense! There will be a court fee,
solicitor's costs and of course there is no guarantee that you will
win the case.
The civil justice system was reformed in 1999 following the
Woolf Report, Access to Justice (1996). These reforms attempt
to simplify the procedures and terminology and speed the
process up. Parties to a civil case are now encouraged to follow
a pre-action protocol, this is a list of things to be done, and
information which should be given to the other side before court
proceedings are started. If the pre-action protocol is not
followed then the party at fault may be liable for certain costs
when the case comes before the court.…read more

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