Legal Tip-June 5, 2020
Every person that is ask to execute a legal document should have an attorney review it unless they are 100% sure of every thing it says and everything it means. Never sign a settlement agreement in a divorce/domestic action prepared by someone other than your own attorney, (who should thoroughly review any document he/she asks you to sign anyway), without having an attorney review it and explain what it says. The excuse that you cannot afford an attorney is trumped by the fact you cannot afford not to have an attorney. Too many people place “trust” in the other side, and if you had that trust you probably would not be where you find yourself. You must remember you are no longer on the same side, and your interests are not the same.
You can find an attorney that will charge you a modest fee to review the documents and offer their opinion…which will save you a lot of heart ache, and unnecessary financial resources, later.
C. Grile 6/5/2020
Legal Tip-July 13, 2020
Be aware there are time limits to file a lawsuit in almost every type of action. These are called statutes of limitations. Simply put if you fail to file the lawsuit within the time limit allowed by law, you can never file that lawsuit.
Just as there are time limits to file a lawsuit or you are forever prevented from doing it, so also is there a time limit given to respond to someone else filing a lawsuit. In Georgia, that time limit is not rigid when it comes to domestic matters as a matter of practice, but in most all other civil matters those deadlines are crucial, with little or no forgiveness. There is a time limit to answer the initial suit, and failure to do so will result in a “default judgment” against you. This means even if you have a great defense, you cannot present it, and you lose the lawsuit. Most times subjecting yourself to a monetary judgment.
You also must be aware that even after you file a timely answer to the lawsuit, there are deadlines for answering the discovery requested. Discovery meaning questions you must answer, documents you must provide or even statements you must either admit or deny as being true or false. Failure to answer timely, depending on what is requested, it could be quite devastating to your case to miss a deadline for answers.
All these questions can be easily answered by an attorney, and if you are ever involved in a situation that requires a lawsuit or if you are ever defending a lawsuit filed by another, this information is crucial to know.
One last item, the time limits for filing lawsuits and responding to lawsuits vary from state to state, so make certain you are getting the right advice for the right state.
C. Grile, July 13, 2020