Civil litigation is a legal dispute between two or more parties that seek money damages, an injunction to prevent certain activities from occurring, and/or specific performance rather than criminal penalties. An attorney who practices civil litigation is known as a “litigator” or “trial lawyer.” Our lawyers who practice civil litigation can represent you at trials, hearings, arbitrations, and mediations in both Federal and Florida State courts, as well as before administrative agencies. Administrative agencies include local or state licensing boards, city or county commissions, and Federal agencies such as the Social Security Administration for disability benefits.
Types of Civil Litigation
Our lawyers handle a number of different types of litigation and lawsuits. Although Civil Litigation is often thought of as a lawsuit over a contract dispute, it encompasses far more than that. To get additional information about the areas of law we handle, please click on one of the links below:
|Auto Accidents||We handle auto accidents on behalf of individuals or business who have suffered injuries or damages as a result of someone else’s negligence.|
|Bankruptcy||Our lawyers admitted to the Federal Bar handle Chapter 7 and Chapter 13 bankruptcies for individuals filed here in the Middle District of Florida Bankruptcy Court|
|Construction Law||Our attorneys handle cases for both contractors and owners related to breach of contracts or construction liens.|
|Commercial Law||Commercial Law often involves the breach or enforcement of contracts between businesses, as well as disputes between members of a corporation or LLC over how it should be run. We also handle non-compete issues and the collection of notes or mortgages.|
|Medical Devices||We handle recovering damages related to medical device failures such as hip implant systems by manufacturers such as DePuy, Stryker and Zimmer. Our attorneys also have experience in directly filing cases in the ongoing multi-district litigation.|
|Falls & Premises Liability||Property owners, occupiers and business owners have the duty to exercise reasonable care to prevent injuries to persons on their property. If they fail to do so and you are injured, our lawyers can help you recover money to compensate you for your damages.|
|Marital and Family Law||Our Family Law attorneys handle: Divorce / Dissolution Of Marriage, including uncontested divorce; Child Custody / Time Sharing, Parenting Plans and Visitation Negotiations; Child Support Plans and Disputes including modifications and enforcement; Alimony / Spousal Support; Parental Relocation; Military Divorce (overseas or deployed service members have a particular need for local legal representation); Domestic violent injunctions|
|Insurance Disputes / Coverage Issues||Our lawyers will fight the insurance companies on your behalf to have your insurance claim paid and see that you get the benefits you deserve. Insurance companies often initially deny claims and then become interested in settling once an attorney is involved. We have handled: Life Insurance Claims, Auto Claims, Health Insurance Claims, Long Term Disability Claims, Homeowners Claims, Property Claims, Accident Or Other Personal Injury Claims.|
|Medical Malpractice||Medical malpractice occurs when a health care provider deviates from the recognized “standard of care” in the treatment of a patient. Florida has extensive pre-suit requirements. Let our medical malpractice attorneys assist you in evaluating your claim to get you the compensation you deserve.|
|Motorcycle Accidents||Motorcycle Accidents bring an additional level of complexity to a personal injury claim. Let one of our experienced attorneys assist you in resolving claims related to a motorcycle accident.|
|Nursing Home Negligence||Our attorneys have handled cases involving: Bed Sores, Death, Physical abuse, Repeated falls, Improper restraints, Over-medication, Dehydration, Malnutrition, Failure to provide proper hygiene, undue influence on estate issues / wills. By taking action, you may be protecting someone else from abuse or neglect.|
|Other types of Accidents||Faulty equipment operation, equipment failure, unlawful service of alcohol, defective products as well as many other unusual circumstances, all provide the potential for injury. Let our attorneys get you the compensation you deserve.|
|Personal Injury||Personal injury law is a broad category that can consist of any situation where one person acts intentionally or negligently (unreasonably) under the circumstances and causes injury to another person. Our 50 years of experience has prepared us to get you the best result in your case.|
|Real Estate||Our attorneys handle Property Disputes, Ownership Disputes, Boundary Disputes, Breach of contract, Landlord–Tenant Disputes, and Issues resulting from Improper Closings of Real Estate Sales Transactions, such as unpaid assessments or undisclosed liens or mortgages.|
|Security Negligence||Commercial property owners have a responsibility to ensure the safety of the public while on their property. Inadequate security or failed maintenance of a property or a business can result in assaults, burglaries, and serious injuries. It is important to consult an attorney right away to ensure your rights are protected.|
|Social Security Disability / SSI||Let one of our experienced attorneys assist you with making your Social Security Disability Claim. We handle both initial claims and appeals when claims are denied. Best of all you do not pay any fees unless we are successful in obtaining your benefits.|
|Wills, Trusts & Estates Planning||The proliferation of do-it-yourself forms on the internet to create wills or trusts has proven to be a pitfall for a number of Floridians. Our attorneys handle probate and trust litigation to resolve issues related to poorly-drafted documents or misconduct by personal representatives or trustees. Many of these problems can be avoided by proper drafting of your estate planning documents.|
|Wrongful Death||If your loved one has died as a result of the wrongful conduct of another, you need an experienced trial attorney to ensure your family gets the compensation it deserves.|
What is Litigation?
Litigation is the process of preparing a case for trial, and if a settlement cannot be reached, presenting the case at trial and potentially handling appeals. Civil Litigation moves through multiple stages as the lawsuit progresses. First our lawyers develop the best legal theories in support of your case, and then refine those theories as we proceed through the investigation phase. When representing the Plaintiff (the person who initiates a lawsuit), often a demand letter is sent to the opposing party in an attempt to resolve the matter without filing a lawsuit. If that is unsuccessful, then pleadings are written and filed with the appropriate court. Next we utilize the discovery process to acquire the information necessary to prove or defend your case at trial or arbitration. Discovery includes such things as depositions and interrogatories sent to opposing parties, as well as demands that they produce documents or other items relevant to the case. Usually the next step is mediation, where the parties attempt to resolve their differences by explaining to each other their positions with the help of a neutral third-party, the mediator.
If mediation is unsuccessful, the case moves into the pre-trial phase and then the trial itself. At trial, our attorneys use their experience to select a jury who will serve as the decider of the facts in dispute. After the trial, if a party is unhappy with the result, they may be able to appeal the decision to a higher court. We have attorneys experienced in appellate work who can handle your case through the appeal process if needed. Despite the frequent mention of appeals in the news, in reality few cases progress that far. Only two percent of cases filed end in a trial and of those, only fifteen percent are appealed. This is one of the reasons it is important to understand the litigation process. Because of good trial preparation, most of the time a case is won or lost long before the trial date.
For more information on civil litigation, call Goldstein, Buckley, Cechman, Rice & Purtz. We will assist you in determining what can be done to protect your rights and recover money for the damages that were done to you or your business.
Goldstein, Buckley, Cechman, Rice & Purtz, P.A. has six offices in Southwest Florida. The offices are located in Fort Myers (two offices to serve you), Cape Coral, Naples, Lehigh Acres, and Port Charlotte for your convenience. Call us first at 800-332-9404 or fill out a simple case form today.