Because of the various intricate and legal considerations involved in defending a Breach of Contract claim, it is strongly recommended that you hire an attorney to answer a lawsuit filed against you or your company. The importance of retaining an attorney cannot be overemphasized in this respect. You should also be mindful that absent special circumstances, you (or your attorney) will have twenty (20) calendar days to provide a response after being served with a summons and a complaint.
How your attorney responds to a lawsuit will depend on the facts alleged in the complaint, the facts at issue, the applicable law, governing agreements, prior transactions and other matters. For instance, a request to set aside or nullify the action, or a motion to quash, could be appropriate if you have not been properly served with applicable papers or provided with a proper notice in the case. If the count or complaint fails to state a cause of action, your attorney may request that the complaint be partially or entirely dismissed, or be stricken if it constitutes a "sham." Alternatively a request may be made for a more definite statement if the complaint is vague, ambiguous or difficult to address. See Florida Rules of Civil Procedure 1.140(a)(3) and (e). Should your attorney decide to file an answer to the lawsuit, it will be necessary for him or her to deny or affirm each allegation and to decide which affirmative defense(s) will be relevant or appropriate under the circumstances. It should be noted that the law requires that certain averments in the complaint be denied or they will be forever waived, and only your attorney will know how to properly handle such aspects of the case to prevent potential problems later.
In addition to the above, your attorney will need to decide whether a counterclaim, a cross claimor a third party claimwill be appropriate. A counterclaim is essentially a reverse lawsuit (a countersuit) filed by the defendant against the initiating party (plaintiff). There are two types of counterclaims, a permissive counterclaim and a compulsory counterclaim. Unlike a compulsory counterclaim, a permissive counterclaim does not arise from the same "transaction or occurrence" as the plaintiff's original claim, and therefore, is not initially required for presentment to prevent waiver. SeeFlorida Rule of Civil Procedure 1.170. Note also Rule 1.110 titled General Rules of Pleading, Rule 1.100 titled Pleadings and Motions and Rule 1.170, titled Counterclaims and Crossclaims. Consult your attorney for more information.
Note: Above is a simplification and a brief overview provided for informational purposes only. There are additional considerations and exceptions that could be applicable to your specific circumstances. It is therefore not intended and does not replace the advice of an experienced litigation attorney. You are urged to seek professional advice before making any decisions.
If you need to answer a breach of contract lawsuit filed against you or your company anywhere in Central Florida, please contact Orlando attorney Jonathan K. Allen. Breach of contract issues are frequently complicated and need to be handled by an experienced business attorney to ensure that your interests are properly protected. Mr. Allen have helped many business owners in the past and would be honored to help you to. Call us today at (407) 205-2330 or fill out the online form provided on this page and we will contact you shortly. We value your privacy and will keep any information you provide strictly confidential.
Please feel free to visit our breach of contract page for detailed information on breach of contract under Florida Law.
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