Dealing with legal cases can be one of the most frightening experiences for many people. Unnecessary delays, frequent legal notices, back and forth trip to court, lawyer fees, etc., are the things that scare people the most while dealing with legal cases. But don’t worry if you know the proper steps you should follow when dealing with legal matters; you can smoothly handle legal issues and even get a favorable judgment.

This article will help you know the proper steps you should follow while dealing with legal cases, the precautions you should take, and the special measures you can take to protect yourself. 

Legal cases in India

Legal cases in India are broadly categorized into civil cases and criminal cases. The procedures and strategies for dealing with each type of case are different. In this article, we will cover the step-by-step process for dealing with both types of cases separately.

Dealing with Civil cases

Civil cases are those cases where there is a disagreement between two or more parties. The parties can be individuals, corporates, businesses, government agencies, or the government itself. The most common civil disputes in India are- property disputes, matrimonial disputes, inheritance-related disputes, contract disputes, disputes with government agencies, consumer disputes, tenant-landlord disputes, etc. 

In civil cases, an aggrieved party files a civil suit, petition, or application before the honorable court. The court, in turn, issues summon notices to the party against whom the case is filed. Similarly, the person who files the case is called the petitioner. The person against whom the case is filed is called the respondent. In India, civil issues are handled or managed in accordance with The Code Of Civil Procedure, 1908. You don’t need to go through the entire law, but it’s better to be aware that such a law exists. 

Step by Step process of dealing with civil cases 

  • If a civil case is filed against you, you will receive a notice from the court. The notice will inform you of the following things-
    • Case number.
    • Laws under which the case is filed.
    • Name of the court which is handling the case.
    • The date on which you have to appear in person or through a lawyer to submit your response.
    • Name of the person who has filed the case against you. 
  • When the court officer approaches you with the court notice, it is most often best advised to accept the notice and sign it. Some people try to avoid the notice by absconding, but it has its own negative consequences. 
  • After receiving the notice, you should take pictures of it or get it photocopied to keep it safe. It is an important step; later, losing the notice can bring some inconveniences. 
  • You should inform your lawyer about the notice and hand it over to your lawyer to take the necessary measures. Not informing your lawyer or ignoring the court notice will not solve the problem. The court can later issue summon orders, bailable warrants or even non-bailable warrants to ensure your presence. 
  • Discuss the case with your lawyer and understand the legal remedies available to you. Your lawyer will tell you about the best legal strategy you can adopt to handle the case, the documents you need to handle your case and even explain to you the legal jargon.
  • If you are not satisfied with your lawyer’s advice, you can consult another lawyer for a second opinion. But switching lawyers between cases should only be done in exceptional circumstances. 
  • Not only you will file your written statement before the court; the other party will file their response as well, and then the judge, after hearing the viewpoints and submissions from both the parties, will decide on the matter. 

Dealing with criminal cases

Criminal cases involve offenses of criminal nature. Various criminal offenses are mentioned in the Indian Penal Code (IPC). An aggrieved party can register a complaint or an FIR against you, alleging you of performing some criminal offense. 

The most common criminal cases in India are- dowry harassment cases (498A), rape or rape on the pretext of marriage (376), unnatural sex (377), sexual harassment (354A), etc. Indian criminal cases are handled in as per the Criminal Procedure Code. 

Criminal cases are categorized as bailable or non-bailable and cognizable or non-cognizable. Bailable Offences are those in which the police give you bail on some surety. Whereas in non-bailable cases, the bail is provided by the courts. Cognizable offenses are those where police can investigate the matter and arrest you without a warrant, whereas in non-cognizable offenses, police need a warrant to arrest you.

Step by Step process of dealing with criminal cases

  • If you get some prior knowledge that a party is going to file a cognizable non-bailable criminal case against you, you should immediately consult your lawyer and file an anticipatory bail application. Having bail ensures your freedom from arrest by the police. In India, many false cases are filled. This step can save you from the pain you can suffer from arrest due to false cases.
  • If a person has filed an FIR or complaint against you and the offense is bailable. Consult your lawyer immediately about the notice from the police. Your lawyer will handle the procedures to get you bail from the police. 
  • If an FIR or complaint is filed against you for a non-bailable and cognizable offense, you need to handle the matter with special care. A good step here can be to file anticipatory bail if it will protect you from the trauma of getting arrested by the police. Even if you are arrested, you should immediately move a bail application through your lawyer.
  • If the session courts reject your bail, move to the High court. If they also reject it, you can move to the supreme court. Getting bail is the most crucial thing while dealing with criminal cases in India. 
  • When the police receive an FIR, it registers a case against the offender, the investigation is carried out, a charge sheet is filed in the court, pleas are submitted, the trial of the case begins, witnesses and evidence are examined, and cross-examination is done, arguments are heard, and then the judge passes the judgment. This process can take a long time to complete. Each step requires the help of your lawyer to present your side to the court. 

If you want to hire a lawyer in Chandigarh to handle your civil and criminal cases, use the services of Lex solutions, one of the leading legal firms in Chandigarh. Lex solutions help you handle civil, criminal, corporate, matrimonial, property, and various other disputes. Being among the leading law firms in Chandigarh also provides NRI legal services.