One of the most frustrating things for an attorney and client is the length
and expense in bringing a civil case to conclusion.
Because of the backlog of cases and the priority of criminal over civil
matters, civil cases are put on the back burner and may not reach trial
until five years after they were originally filed.
In a effort to clear their calendars, courts will often sit hearings on
the cases or even schedule the case for trial even though there is only
a remote possibiolity that the case can actually be resolved. The result
is that attorneys often have to appear in an over-crowded courtroom. The
attorney at the expense of the client may have to prepare documents for
filing or even prepare for trial. Because of court’s frustration
in moving cases along, they will often charge an attorney monetary sanctions
for not complying with a court rule or not being prepared to go to trial,
even through the court itself was not prepared. This means that an attorney
may have to prepare for trial several different times. He may have to
rush to prepare to make sure all the witnesses and evidence are available.
Once this is done he may sit around in a courtroom for half the day only
to find out that the case is being put off several months.
Pointing out problems is easy; finding a solution is difficult. If we had
more judges and more courtrooms, litigators could move more quickly. Barring
that, there is small claims court. In small claims a resolution of your
claim may only take a couple of months. You can sue for up to $7,500.00
without an attorney. In view of the savings in time and money it may be
well worth filing in small claims even though the actual damages are in
excess of the $7,500.00 limit.