A motion for dismissal, or "motion to dismiss," relates to civil procedure rules in lawsuit. A motion to dismiss basically allows the court to terminate a case before it begins. This decision is often based on the information (or lack of information) contained in the plaintiff’s original complaint. The complaint must state certain information regarding to the main legal conflict in the case. If the complaint is not submitted properly, or if it lacks information, the defendant can often file a pretrial motion to dismiss in response.
What Are the Grounds for a Dismissal?
A court may be dismissed for various reasons. The court will review the plaintiff’s complaint to determine whether it’s worth it for the court to proceed with a complete lawsuit for the conflict. Also, the defendant will want to make a similar review in order to determine whether or not they can file a motion for dismissal and have the case thrown out.
Some common grounds upon which a motion for dismissal can be granted include: Lack of jurisdiction by the court; improper venue for the lawsuit; violations of filing deadlines and other civil procedure matters; and failure to state a claim.
What Is a Failure to State a Claim?
A common reason to dismiss a lawsuit is a "failure to state a claim." This is where the plaintiff has failed to properly identify the legal issue for which they are suing the other party. For instance, in a negligence claim (or any other type of personal injury claim), the plaintiff needs to provide initial evidence that all the elements of proof will be met during the lawsuit.
For negligence, this includes: existence of a duty of care; breach of duty; causation; and provable damages. If any of these elements are not listed or adequately addressed in the complaint, the defending party will often file a motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim. This can help the defending party to obtain a ruling even without having to proceed any further with the legal process.
Do I Need a Lawyer for Filing Pretrial Motions?
In any personal injury claim, the assistance of a qualified personal injury lawyer is often necessary. You may wish to hire a lawyer if you need help with various matters such as pretrial motions and other procedural aspects of trial. Also, your attorney can represent you when it comes to the actual trial meetings and hearings.