What is civil law?

Civil law is a type of law that is concerned and related to private law and the relations and private affairs of the citizens of the community and it is distinct from criminal and public law. Please refer to question three for a more detailed answer of what specific branches does civil law involve.

What is civil litigation?

Civil litigation refers to a process where a party may bring upon a claim under court proceedings. It is a legal way of resolving disputes between parties and/or members of society. It involves solving disputes involving public bodies and/or private individuals where one party usually seeks compensation, damages, or specific performance from the other party.

What specific areas of civil law do you specialise in?

In relevance to civil law, our law firm specialises in every branch. We provide guidance, legal advice, and opinions to support a wide range of clients and their situations. We provide legal assistance to individuals as well as business corporations. The specific areas of civil law that we specialise at are, but are not limited to, divorce and family law, intellectual property law, property law, consumer law, competition law, contract disputes, personal insolvency, inheritance claims, company law, partnership disputes, commercial leases, maritime law, mental health, civil litigation, road traffic law, wills and estates, and guardianship.

Will I have to go to court?

In civil litigation cases, you may have to go to court; however, cases always vary by their own circumstances. You are entitled to agree to a settlement with the other party once the legal proceedings have been started. The only time you would have to attend court hearings is when a settlement or an agreement cannot be reached between the parties.

How long does a civil case take?

The length of each case is variable. Each case depends on its nature, complexity, the court’s timetable, the parties’ amenability, and the parties involved. Most cases may be over in a matter of a few months in case there are no any complex legal or factual issues or even external boundaries to the proceedings. The United Kingdom legal system’s civil procedure and judicial case management has been implemented in a way to prevent cases from “dragging” for years in the court room without being resolved and concluded. Another major factor in the length of a case would be the solicitor assigned to your case. Our solicitors and legal professionals are present and our team assures you a due time follow up on your case and on a regular basis.

Will you take my case?

Our law firm specialises in all types of civil cases. However, all cases are different and have variant aspects. In order for us to determine whether your case will be taken is for you to contact us for a consultation. The primary consultation will be free of charge and in that consultation, we will decide whether to pursue and take on your case or not. Please do email us at mail@haymanssolicitors.co.uk with the details. We will be more than happy to meet you at offices during the working hours from 9 am to 5 pm or during the weekends or non-working hours in urgent cases and/or situations. In our meeting with you, we will thoroughly discuss and evaluate your case by presenting our best judgement and possible case outcomes where the strengths and the weaknesses of your case will be made aware to you.

Can I appeal to a civil litigation judgement and where will it be heard?

The judicial structure and the separation of courts system is very complex. In most civil cases, the losing party always considers asking the court to reconsider the ruling of the lower ranked court. The reconsideration may be in whole or partial. There isn’t a single answer to this question; however, in most circumstances, the losing party has always the right to appeal, but with time limitations. Usually, the appeal notice must be filed at most 21 days after the decision of the court has been made unless otherwise stated specifically by the court at hand. In some cases, the appeal must be made seven days from the moment the decision of the court has been made.

Regarding rulings of county court district judges, the appeals may be submitted to country court circuit judges and then to the Court of Appeals if further appeal is deemed as necessary. Moreover, initial rulings of the county court circuit judges may be appealed to the High court, and finally, initial rulings of the high court may be appealed to the Supreme Court via permission from the Court of Appeals or the Supreme Court itself. Generally, this appeal must be made within 28 days from the day the decision was made.

However, under very rare and certain circumstances, civil cases may be appealed straight to the Supreme Court from a high court judge and/or a divisional court judge. For most appeals to be taken, a permission must be obtained from the responsible court at hand. Finally, clients must be aware that reconsidering a case involves only the re-deciding of the law applied and not the facts introduced.

Are you, as the firm, involved in pro bono work?

At our law firm, we indeed provide pro bono work, which means “for the public good” for individuals and corporations that are unable to afford the legal services our company offers. Pro bono work provides us with the ability to interact with different people from society and develop our overall legal professionalism and communication. Through pro bono work, we also develop qualities of negotiation and advocacy.

What are professional negligence claims?

Professional negligence claims are claims made for the purpose of losses suffered by a professional. Professional negligence is professional carelessness and it involves an error made by someone who professes a particular skill such as, but not limited to, a doctor, lawyer, teacher, accountant. A claim may be made against any professional or professionals if they have carelessly erred in their jobs towards you. Our law firm possesses the experience to assist you in determining and pinpointing errors and faults made by other professionals in their desired field of work. Our existence can help and assist you to determine whether your losses are legally attributable and whether you are entitled to any damages or recovery.

Will my case be kept confidential?

Solicitors are bound by the Solicitors Code of Conduct and confidentiality which ensures that no disclosures about your specific case can be made to anyone outside the team of lawyers working on your case without your own and specific permission. However, it must be noted that the court has the power to order your solicitor to disclose certain information relevant to your case to the other party for the sake of conducting a fair trial and civil procedure. This means that certain documentation belonging to your case may be disclosed to the opposing party. This specific documentation is documentation that you decide to rely upon and documentation that will affect your case and its outcome at court drastically.

What is a claimant entitled to recover in civil law cases?

Usually, a claimant is entitled to recover damages made by the wrongdoer, who is referred to as the defendant by the legal jargon. A defendant may be ordered to repay the money or the assets he or she has taken away from you. He or she may also have to pay damages to the plaintiff, the person that was wrongfully done. The aim of a civil case is to put the claiming party in a position they were in prior to the negligence, breach of contract or tort.

Can I always make a claim or is there a limit?

There certainly is a limit that exists. Due to the existence of the Limitation Act 1980 which was ratified to urge parties to file claims and to refrain from improper justice being served, most types of claims have a certain limitation associated to them. As contractual breaching claims are one of the most common claims made, 6 years from the date on which the contract was breached is the limit for you to bring on a claim. Moreover, personal injury claims should be brought within three years from the date the loss was suffered from the opposing party’s side.

What is alternative dispute resolution?

Alternative dispute resolution is a group of methods for resolving disputes other than court proceedings. Alternative dispute resolution is consisted of mediation, conciliation, and arbitration. Mediation involves a third party, a mediator, who helps both parties of the civil case, come to a resolution or to an agreement. Mediation is voluntary and only takes place upon both parties’ consent. Conciliation on the other hand is also voluntary, but it differs from mediation in a way that the conciliator may be asked by the parties to provide a settlement proposal that is non-binding in nature for the parties to consider. Finally, to pursue an arbitration, parties to a contract usually include an arbitration clause in their contract and/or agreement and pursue it further via arbitration. Just like mediation and conciliation, it is voluntary and requires the consent of both parties to the civil dispute. What varies is that once arbitration proceedings are initiated, a party is not entitled to withdraw from the proceedings unilaterally and that the decision made is final and enforceable.

Who has to pay the fees of the commercial litigation?

Usually, during litigation, each party and member of the litigation proceedings is responsible for his and/or her own costs. The rule of thumb however is that the loser pays the reasonable costs of the issue at hand which means that upon the completion of the litigation proceeding and the awarding of the verdict, the judge is to decide the party liable to pay the costs of the litigation which is in most cases the losing party. The costs that are included are comprised of, but not limited to, witness expenses, court fees, and expert fees. However, clients must note that in situations where the case at hand is below £10,000.00 it will be considered as a small claim case and each party would be responsible to pay for his or her own fees, whether successful or not.

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