What’s the first thing you should do when you find out that you’ve been sued? Well, PANIC, of course! But only do that for a few seconds, then relax, take a deep breath, and realize that things may not be as bad as they seem. Being sued isn’t the end of the world! (Or at least isn’t in most cases).
The next thing to do is write down a note of when and how you received the Summons (or whatever notice or court document you got.) This is important for two reasons:
- So you can determine by what date the Summons or other notice must be responded to. Usually the document will give the response deadline. In California, it is normally 30 days after the service.
- So your attorney can determine whether the service of the summons is improper. (You’d be amazed how often bogus service happens!)
The third thing to do is calculate and write down the deadline for responding. If the summons gives you 30 days to respond, make a note in your calendar of 28 days in the future (28 days instead of 30 to give some extra time to get the answer filed).
Fourth, contact our office to let us know that you have received legal documents, and then fax or mail the documents to us. In a free phone consultation, we’ll go over the four options for handling a lawsuit, and the pros and cons of each.