What You Should Know About Lawsuits in Maryland

A lawsuit is a mechanism for resolving disputes between two people. Disputes can range from commercial, property, or personal injury matters. A lawsuit can be used for all kinds of issues that people cannot resolve for themselves. The parties in a lawsuit are the plaintiff, which is the person who brings the lawsuit, and the defendant, which is the person or entity who has the lawsuit brought against them.

A seasoned attorney could inform you about what you should know about lawsuits in Maryland. Call today to set up a meeting with an accomplished attorney.


A summons is the document that the court prepares to bring to the defendant in order to deal with the problem being raised in the complaint. The summons is a paper that gives the defendant notice of the lawsuit and informs them of the complaint.

A person gets a summons by filing a complaint with the court. Sometimes the court requires a civil action form or another kind of form that gives details about the parties. The person will then pay a fee and the court will issue the summons.

Once a person gets the summons, they have to serve it on the other party within the time required by the court. Sometimes a summons is good for 30, 60, or 90 days, depending on the court and location. It is important to know that the plaintiff has to physically have it delivered to the defendant or the defendant’s agent.

Responding to a Complaint

If a person is served a complaint in a lawsuit in Maryland, the amount of time given to respond varies by jurisdiction. In Maryland, a person typically has 30 days to respond. The timeline begins when a person is served. During that time, the individual has to prepare what is called a responsive pleading, which is an answer or some motion that dismisses the velocity. The defendant cannot ignore a lawsuit. If they do, they are going to be in default. Knowing how to respond to a complaint is one of the most important things someone should know about lawsuits in Maryland. A skilled attorney could help an individual come up with a quality response to the other party’s claims.

Alternative Dispute Resolution

Alternative dispute resolution is an agreement that parties have to solve their problems without going to court. They hire a neutral third party, either a mediator or an arbitrator, to help parties resolve their disputes. ADR provisions are common in commercial contracts, employment situations, and service contracts like cell phone agreements. Arbitration is a mechanism for keeping disputes between the parties out of court in hopes that they can resolve the differences in a more efficient mediated format.

Difference Between Mediation and Arbitration

The difference between mediation and arbitration is that mediation is more akin to a settlement, where a neutral third party, such as an attorney or retired judge, helps the parties negotiate a settlement between them. Arbitration is a mini-trial, where there is a fact finder who will preside over an actual hearing. The difference between the two is that it is not in a court setting. Instead, it is usually in an office and everything is expedited.

Speak with a dedicated lawyer today for more information about what you should know about lawsuits in Maryland.