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Encyclopedia > Settlement (litigation)
Civil Procedure
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For other uses of settlement, including legal uses, see Settlement.

In law there are several main meanings of the word settlement. The most common meaning refers to when the parties to a dispute (both disputes that are being litigated before the courts, and disputes where court action has not been started) reach an agreement as to the case, which is said to 'settle' the claim. Civil procedure is the body of law that sets out the process that courts will follow when hearing cases of a civil nature (a civil action, as opposed to a criminal action). ... The Federal Rules of Civil Procedure (FRCP) govern civil procedure in the United States district courts, or more simply, court procedures for civil suits. ... The Civil Procedure Rules 1998 came into force in England & Wales on 26 April 1999, largely replacing and significantly overhauling the previous Rules of the Supreme Court (applicable to the High Court of Justice) and the County Court Rules. ... Civil procedure doctrines are rules developed by case law as opposed to being set down in codes or legislation, which, together with Court Rules / Codes, define the steps that a person involved in a civil lawsuit can, may, or can not take. ... In law, jurisdiction (from the Latin ius, iuris meaning law and dicere meaning to speak) is the practical authority granted to a formally constituted legal body or to a political leader to deal with and make pronouncements on legal matters and, by implication, to administer justice within a defined area... Subject matter jurisdiction is a legal term used in civil procedure to indicate that a case must be entered in the proper court of law based on the nature of the claim. ... Diversity jurisdiction is a term used in civil procedure to refer to the situation in which a United States district court has subject matter jurisdiction to hear a civil case because the parties are diverse, meaning that they come from different states. ... Personal jurisdiction, jurisdiction of (or over) the person, or jurisdiction in personam is the power of a court to require a party (usually the defendant) or a witness to come before the court. ... In the United States, removal jurisdiction refers to the power of a defendant to move a lawsuit filed in state court to the Federal district court of the original courts district. ... Venue is the location where a case is heard. ... A change of venue is the legal term for moving a trial to a new location. ... Forum non conveniens is Latin for inconvenient forum or inappropriate forum. ... In the law, a pleading is one of the papers filed with a court in a civil action, such as a complaint, a demurrer, or an answer. ... It has been suggested that Process agent be merged into this article or section. ... Each state has process serving laws, or Rules of Civil Procedure, that govern civil procedure in their courts, or more simply, court procedures for civil suits in their state. ... In general use, a complaint is an expression of displeasure, such as poor service at a store, or from a local government, for example. ... In the law, a cause of action is a recognized kind of legal claim that a plaintiff pleads or alleges in a complaint to start a lawsuit. ... In law, a class action is an equitable procedural device used in litigation for determining the rights of and remedies, if any, for large numbers of people whose cases involve common questions of law and fact. ... The U.S. Class Action Fairness Act of 2005, 28 U.S.C. Sections 1332(d), 1453, and 1711-1715, grants federal courts original jurisdiction over certain mass actions and class actions (forms of civil action) in which the amount in controversy exceeds $5 million, and any of the members... In common law civil procedure, a demurrer is a pleading by the defendant that contests the legal sufficiency of the complaint without admitting or denying the allegations therein. ... In the common law, an answer is the first pleading by a defendant, usually filed and served upon the plaintiff within a certain strict time limit after a civil complaint or criminal information or indictment has been served upon the defendant. ... An affirmative defense is a defense used in litigation between private parties in common law jurisdictions. ... The reply is a response by plaintiff to defedants answer. ... A Counterclaim is made by the defendant to a civil procedure, in a main actions against the plaintiff or against the plaintiff and other persons. ... A cross-claim is a claim brought against a co-party in the same side of a lawsuit. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... Impleader is procedural device before trial in which a party joins a third-party into a lawsuit because that third-party is liable to an original defendant. ... Interpleader is a device allowed in U.S. civil litigation. ... Look up trial in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... In law, discovery is the pre-trial phase in a lawsuit in which each party through the law of civil procedure can request documents and other evidence from other parties or can compel the production of evidence by using a subpoena or through other discovery devices, such as requests for... In law, interrogatories are a formal set of written questions propounded by one litigant and required to be answered by an adversary, in order to clarify matters of evidence and help to determine in advance what facts will be presented at any trial in the case. ... In law, a deposition is evidence given under oath and recorded for use in court at a later date. ... Default judgment is a binding judgment in favor of the plaintiff when the defendant has not responded to a summons or has failed to appear before a court. ... Summary judgment is a legal term which means that a court has made a determination (a judgment) without a full trial. ... Voluntary dismissal is when a law suit is terminated by request of the plaintiff (the party originally bringing the suit to court). ... Involuntary dismissal is the termination of a court case despite the plaintiffs objection. ... In law there are two main meanings of the word settlement. ... In legal parlance, a trial is an event in which parties to a dispute present information (in the form of evidence) in a formal setting, usually a court, before a judge, jury, or other designated finder of fact, in order to achieve a resolution to their dispute. ... A party is a person or group of persons that compose a single entity which can be identified as one for the purposes of the law. ... A plaintiff, also known as a claimant or complainer, is the party who initiates a lawsuit (also known as an action) before a court. ... A defendant or defender is any party who is required to answer the complaint of a plaintiff or pursuer in a civil lawsuit before a court, or any party who has been formally charged or accused of violating a criminal statute. ... This article or section does not cite any references or sources. ... The phrase voir dire derives from Middle French; in modern English it is interpreted to mean speak the truth and generally refers to the process by which prospective jurors are questioned about their backgrounds and potential biases before being invited to sit on a jury. ... In the common law, burden of proof is the obligation to prove allegations which are presented in a legal action. ... A judgment or judgement (see spelling note below), in a legal context, is synonymous with the formal decision made by a court following a lawsuit. ... Judgment as a matter of law(JMOL) is a motion made by a party, during trial, claiming the opposing party has insufficient evidence to reasonably support its case. ... Renewed judgment as a matter of law (JMOL) is the partner of judgment as a matter of law in American Federal courts. ... Judgment notwithstanding the verdict, or J.N.O.V. for short (English Judgment + Latin Non Obstante Veredicto) is the practice in American courts whereby the presiding judge in a civil case may overrule the decision of a jury and reverse or amend their verdict. ... In law, a motion to set aside judgment is an application to overturn or set aside a courts judgment, verdict or other final ruling in a case. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged with Trial de novo. ... In law, a Judicial remedy is the means by which a court, usually in the exercise of civil law jurisdiction, enforces a right, imposes a penalty, or makes some other court order. ... Look up Injunction in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... In law, damages refers to the money paid or awarded to a claimant (as it is known in the UK) or plaintiff (in the US) following their successful claim in a civil action. ... Attorneys fees or attorneys fees are the costs of legal representation that an attorneys client or a party to a lawsuit incurs. ... The American Rule is a rule regarding assessment of attorneys fees arising out of litigation. ... The English Rule is a rule regarding assessment of attorneys fees arising out of litigation. ... A declaratory judgment is a judgment of a court which declares what rights each party in a dispute should have, but does not order any action or result in any legal damages. ... In law, an appeal is a process for making a formal challenge to an official decision. ... A writ of mandamus or simply mandamus, which means we order in Latin, is the name of one of the prerogative writs and is a court order directing someone, most frequently a government official, to perform a specified act. ... Certiorari (pronunciation: sər-sh(ē-)ə-ˈrer-ē, -ˈrär-ē, -ˈra-rē) is a legal term in Roman, English and American law referring to a type of writ seeking judicial review. ... Look up Settlement in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... A lawsuit is a civil action brought before a court in order to recover a right, obtain damages for an injury, obtain an injunction to prevent an injury, or obtain a declaratory judgment to prevent future legal disputes. ... Ther word claim has several uses: a right; an insurance claim; a patent claim; a logical assertion of truth. ...

Contents

The basis of settlements

A settlement, as well as dealing with the dispute between the parties is a contract between those parties, and is one possible (and common) result when parties sue (or contemplate so doing) each other in civil proceedings. The plaintiff(s) and defendant(s) identified in the lawsuit can end the dispute between themselves without a trial. Justice is not a central issue here, merely power: often one party has little option but to submit to the will of the other. A contract is a legally binding exchange of promises or agreement between parties that the law will enforce. ... It has been suggested that civil trial be merged into this article or section. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... Proceedings are the collection of academic papers that are published in the context of a conference. ... A plaintiff, also known as a claimant or complainer, is the party who initiates a lawsuit (also known as an action) before a court. ... It has been suggested that civil trial be merged into this article or section. ... A controversy is a contentious dispute, a disagreement over which parties are actively arguing. ... In legal parlance, a trial is an event in which parties to a dispute present information (in the form of evidence) in a formal setting, usually a court, before a judge, jury, or other designated finder of fact, in order to achieve a resolution to their dispute. ...


The contract is based upon the bargain that a party foregoes its ability to sue (if it has not sued already), or to continue with the claim (if the plaintiff has sued), in return for the certainity written into the settlement. The courts will enforce the settlement: if it is breached, the party in default could be sued for breach of that contract. In some jurisdicitons, the party in default could also face the original action being restored.


The settlement of the lawsuit defines legal requirements of the parties, and is often put in force by an order of the court after a joint stipulation by the parties. In other situations (as where the claims have been satisfied by the payment of a certain sum of money) the plaintiff and defendant can simply file a notice that the case has been dismissed. It has been suggested that civil trial be merged into this article or section. ... A court order is an official proclamation by a judge (or panel of judges) that defines the legal relationships between the parties before the court and requires or authorizes the carrying out of certain steps by one or more parties to a case. ... A trial at the Old Bailey in London as drawn by Thomas Rowlandson and Augustus Pugin for Ackermanns Microcosm of London (1808-11). ... Categories: Move to Wiktionary | Substubs ... This article needs additional references or sources for verification. ...


The majority of cases are decided by a settlement. Both sides (or the side with fewer monetary resources) often have a strong incentive to settle to avoid the costs (such as legal fees, finding expert witnesses, etc.), associated with a trial, particularly where a trial by jury is available. Generally, one side or the other will make a settlement offer early in litigation. The parties may hold (and indeed, the court may require) a settlement conference, at which they attempt to reach such a settlement. A settlement offer or offer to settle is a term used in a civil lawsuit to describe a communication from one party to the other suggesting a settlement - an agreement to end the lawsuit before a judgment is rendered. ... A settlement conference is a meeting between opposing sides of a lawsuit at which the parties attempt to reach a resolution of their dispute without having to proceed to a trial. ...


In controversial cases, it may be written into a settlement that both sides keep its contents and all other information relevant to the case confidential. Confidentiality has been defined by the International Standards Organization (ISO) as ensuring that information is accessible only to those authorized to have access and is one of the cornerstones of Information security. ...


Specific jurisdictions

United States

Generally, when a settlement is reached in the U.S., it will be submitted to the court to be "rolled into a court order". This is done so that the court which was initially assigned the case may retain jurisdiction over it. The court is then free to modify its order as necessary to achieve justice in the case, and a party that breaches the settlement may be held in contempt of court, rather than facing only a civil claim for the breach. In cases where confidentiality is required by the parties, the court order may refer to another document which is not disclosed, but which may be revealed to prove a breach of the settlement. A court order is an official proclamation by a judge (or panel of judges) that defines the legal relationships between the parties before the court and requires or authorizes the carrying out of certain steps by one or more parties to a case. ... Contempt of court is a court ruling which, in the context of a court trial or hearing, deems an individual as holding contempt for the court, its process, and its invested powers. ...


Confidentiality is not possible in class action cases in the United States, where all settlements are subject to approval by the court pursuant to Rule 23 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure and counterpart rules adopted in most states. it also is tend to be something like a village where it as shops houses and parks if it doesnt have them sorts of things it wouldnt be classes as a settlement. In law, a class action is an equitable procedural device used in litigation for determining the rights of and remedies, if any, for large numbers of people whose cases involve common questions of law and fact. ... The Federal Rules of Civil Procedure (FRCP) govern civil procedure in the United States district courts, or more simply, court procedures for civil suits. ...


England and Wales

In England and Wales, if the matter is already before the courts, except in a case where the claim is to be dismissed outright and the Claimant agrees to pay the Defendant's costs, the matter is usually dealt with by a consent order, signed by the legal representatives of both parties and approved by the judge.


To get around the issue of confidentiality referred to above, a special type of consent order, known as a Tomlin Order is entered into. The order itself contains an agreement that the claim is stayed and no further action can be taken in court (expect for referring a dispute in the implementation of the order to court, which is allowed). The order also deals with payment of costs, and payments of money out of court if any money is held by the court (as these are matters which must be dealt with by Court Order). However, the actual terms of the settlement are dealt with in a 'schedule' to the order, which can remain confidential. Breach of the schedule can be dealt with as breach of contract, or breach of the consent order. A Tomlin order is a court order in the English civil justice system under which a court action is stayed, on terms which have been agreed in advance between the parties and which are included in a schedule to the order. ... For schedule in computer science, see schedule (computer science). ...


Criminal cases

In criminal matters, the closest parallel to a settlement is a plea bargain, although this differs in several important respects, particularly the ability of the presiding judge to reject the terms of a settlement. Criminal law (also known as penal law) is the body of statutory and common law that deals with crime and the legal punishment of criminal offenses. ... A plea bargain (also plea agreement, plea deal or copping a plea) is an agreement in a criminal case in which a prosecutor and a defendant arrange to settle the case against the defendant. ...


See also

  • coercion
  • Uri Weiss, The Regressive Effect of Legal Uncertainty [1]

 
 

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