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10 FAQs About Filing a Lawsuit Answered

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Andrew Paul
10 FAQs About Filing a Lawsuit Answered

Whether you're considering filing a lawsuit yourself or you simply wish to understand the legal landscape better, there's a good chance you have questions. You're not alone. In this article, we'll shed light on the seemingly intimidating process by answering ten of the most frequently asked questions about filing a lawsuit in Tennessee. Let's begin.


1. How Long Do I Have to File a Lawsuit in Tennessee?

The period within which you can file a lawsuit in Tennessee, or any other state for that matter, is determined by the statute of limitations. In Tennessee, the statute of limitations varies widely based on the nature of the lawsuit.

  • Personal Injury: If you've been injured in an accident due to someone else's negligence, you can file a lawsuit within one year from the date of the injury. This is quite a short period compared to many other states. Needless to say, prompt action is imperative.
  • Property Damage: If you wish to sue for compensation, you have three years from the date of the damage to file a lawsuit.
  • Breach of Contract: For written contracts, you have six years from the date of the breach to file a lawsuit. If the contract was oral, the statute of limitations is only three years.
  • Medical Malpractice: Claims against healthcare providers must be filed within one year of the date the injury occurred or should have been discovered.
  • Product Liability: If you get injured using/handling a defective product, you can file a lawsuit within one year.

2. Where Do I File My Lawsuit?



A lawsuit should be filed in the county where the defendant resides or where the incident occurred. If the case is a federal matter, it must be filed in the U.S. District Court.


3. Do I Need a Lawyer to File a Lawsuit?

While it's technically possible to represent yourself (known as pro se representation), this approach is usually not recommended due to the complexity of legal procedures and laws. Hire an experienced, knowledgeable, and skilled lawyer to protect your rights and follow all the necessary procedures to a tee.


4. What's the Difference Between Civil and Criminal Cases?

In legal proceedings, civil cases typically involve private disputes between individuals or organizations. Criminal cases revolve around acts deemed harmful to society as a whole. The same conduct can result in both a civil and a criminal case.


5. How Much Will It Cost to File a Lawsuit?

The cost varies depending on the nature of the lawsuit, the court where it's filed, and whether an attorney is hired. Costs may include filing fees, service fees, and attorney's fees.


6. What is Discovery?


Discovery is the pre-trial phase where each party can obtain evidence from the other party. This process can include interrogatories, depositions, and requests to produce documents.


7. What Happens at a Trial?

At a trial, each party presents their case through evidence and arguments. This can include witness testimony, documents, and other evidence. The judge or jury reaches a decision based on the presented evidence.


8. Can I Appeal a Decision?

Yes, if you believe the court made a legal error that impacted the outcome of the case, you can appeal the decision. In Tennessee, the appeal is typically made to the Tennessee Court of Appeals.


9. How Long Does a Lawsuit Take?

The duration of a lawsuit varies significantly and is influenced by many factors. Simple cases may resolve within a few months, while complex cases could stretch for years.

The timeline depends on the nature and complexity of the case, whether the parties are open to settlement discussions, and the court's schedule.

For example, a straightforward breach of contract case may get resolved faster than a complex medical malpractice suit. If the parties are willing to negotiate and reach a settlement, the lawsuit can end considerably faster. Conversely, if the case goes to trial and possibly an appeal, it can extend the process by several months or even years.

In Tennessee, a lawsuit can last anywhere from a few months to a few years.


10. What Happens if I Lose the Lawsuit?


If you lose a lawsuit, you may be required to pay damages to the other party. In some cases, you may also be required to pay the other party's legal fees.


About the Author

The author is an experienced legal professional in Tennessee. With a career built on addressing complex legal challenges and navigating intricate legal procedures, they bring a wealth of experience, expertise, and skills to the table.

Over the years, the author has handled numerous civil and criminal cases in Tennessee. They played an active role in the famous James roofing Tennessee fraud. Find out more about the criminal case against Kenton by exploring James Kenton vs. The State of Tennessee & Chadwick Jackson. The website offers a closer look at James Kenton's fraud charges and his journey.

Watch the assault video and sign Kenton's petition to show your support.

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