Court & Tribunal Litigation
Litigation is amongst the several dispute processes provided by the law. As enacted in several movies and TV shows, litigation is usually conducted before a judge where both parties present their case and argue their matter. However, it is obviously less dramatic and more practical in real courts and tribunals.
What are the Parties Involved in Litigation?
All litigation matters, irrespective of their nature, will always involve at least two parties. At one end is the party bringing the matter before the court for a binding decision. On the other end is the party responding to the matter so brought.
In civil and administrative cases, the party bringing the dispute is referred to as the plaintiff or the applicant. Whereas the responding party is called the respondent. In criminal cases, the party that brings the matter to the court is the State itself and is represented by the prosecutor. Whereas, the party responding in such cases are called defendants who are accused of a criminal act.
What does litigation involve?
In brief, a litigation process usually involves the following steps:
Step 1. Pre-commencement preparation
Step 2. Filing and service of originating process
Step 3. Presenting defenses and crossclaims in court
Step 4. Discovery or issuance of subpoenas
Step 5. Filing of evidence affidavits
Step 6. Trial and decision
Step 7. Appeal if necessary
Step 8. Enforcement of the court’s decision
Alternative dispute resolutions
The court can recommend, or the involved parties can decide to opt for an alternate dispute resolution mechanism at any time during the proceedings. this is a far more costs efficient way of approach in dealing with disputes facing the other party.
How does it work in Courts and Tribunals?
The courts and tribunals in Australia come together to provide several avenues available for litigation within the Australian legal system. Judges overlooking matters in courtrooms and tribunals rely on strictly established processes, laws and legal precedents to give their final decision.