Get our app
Account Sign up Sign in

Lawsuits and dispute resolution

Being involved in a court case is stressful. We can help you.


Defend a lawsuit or resolve a dispute FAQs

  • How do I defend myself in a lawsuit?

    Depending on the situation, you may want to seek legal counsel immediately. In some cases, if you do not respond properly and within a certain amount of time, you may automatically lose your case. It is often not in your best interest to represent yourself in court.

    Before meeting with your lawyer, gather as much information as possible pertaining to the case. Bring the paperwork that was delivered to you, copies of any legal agreements pertaining to the case (lease agreements, sales receipts, divorce agreement), records of communications (phone calls, emails, texts or letters), and information about the party suing you. Do not talk to anyone but your lawyer about the case.

  • What is the difference between mediation and arbitration?

    Mediation and arbitration are both alternatives to going to court (often called alternative dispute resolution or ADR). Sometimes a legal agreement requires that the parties arbitrate or mediate before or instead of going to court. This type of dispute resolution is often low-cost and often preferred to going to court.


    Mediation is when two parties meet with a neutral third person who facilitates an agreeable solution to the problem. Mediators are usually trained in conflict resolution but have no authority to make a decision for the parties.


    Unlike mediators, arbitrators have the authority to decide how the dispute will be resolved. The requirement to arbitrate is written into many types of contracts. While you have little control over the outcome, it often costs less than going to court.

  • What type of disputes can be mediated?

    Often non-criminal cases can be mediated. Mediation is also often used to solve disputes that do not involve breaking an actual law, such as disputes between neighbors. Solving issues using mediation is low-priced, confidential, and faster than court. In addition, unlike arbitration or court, you can have control over the final agreement.

    Disputes often solved with mediation include:

    • Disagreements between neighbors
    • Consumer product or payment issues
    • Workplace grievances
    • Landlord/tenants disputes
    • Business contract issues
    • Student/teacher disputes
    • Family issues
  • What is small claims court?

    Small claims court is where claims with a low monetary value are filed. All states vary; however, usually small claims court is for disputes worth less than $10,000. You do not need a lawyer to file a small claims case for you. Your local small court claims office will provide you with the forms you are required to submit. Like most disputes, the court will want to see that you have tried to solve the dispute in other ways before having the courts solve your dispute. A common use of small claims court is a landlord filing against a tenant for overdue rent.

Ask a lawyer

Our On Call attorneys are here for you.
Characters remaining: 600
Rocket Lawyer On Call® Attorneys

Legal guides

  1. What Can a Cease and Desist Letter Do?
    3 min read
  2. How to File a Suit in Small Claims Court
    4 min read
  3. Do I Need a Civil Litigation Attorney?
    2 min read
  4. Collecting Your Judgment
    3 min read
  5. How Does Small Claims Court Work?
    2 min read
  6. Small Claims Court Dollar Limits by State
    1 min read
  7. What to Do If You Get Sued in Small Claims Court
    2 min read
  8. Do I Need a Civil Rights Lawyer?
    3 min read
  9. What Is Legal Mediation and Arbitration?
    3 min read
  10. What is Pro Se Legal Representation?
    1 min read
  11. How to Collect on a Small Claims Judgment
    2 min read
  12. Do I Need a Litigation Attorney?
    2 min read
  13. How Does Arbitration Work?
    3 min read
  14. Do I Need a Constitutional Lawyer?
    2 min read
  15. Do I Need a Criminal Lawyer?
    3 min read
  16. How to File a Case in Small Claims Court
    2 min read
  17. What Is the Limit on Small Claims Court Cases?
    2 min read
  18. Do I Need an Lawyer for Malpractice or Professional Negligence?
    3 min read
  19. What Is Small Claims Court?
    3 min read
  20. Do I Need a Class Action Attorney?
    2 min read
  21. What Is Alternative Dispute Resolution?
    3 min read
  22. Do I Need a Maritime Lawyer?
    2 min read

Looking for something else?