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How do I File a Fraud Lawsuit?

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  • Written By: Lainie Petersen
  • Edited By: Melissa Wiley
  • Last Modified Date: 17 November 2016
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If you wish to file a fraud lawsuit, you should contact a fraud litigation attorney as soon as possible. In many places, the statute of limitations on such cases can be relatively short, so you want to make sure that you can get your lawsuit filed within that period of time. You should take steps to select the best fraud litigation attorney you can afford and to collect any documents or other information that may be useful in your lawsuit. Once you speak to your attorney, he can give you a good idea as to whether you have a chance of proving fraud in court and successfully receiving some compensation. If you decide to proceed, you'll have to file your case in court and either settle the case outside the courtroom or go to trial, depending on whether the defendant is willing to cooperate.

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In cases where you suspect you have been the victim of fraud, it may be to your advantage to report the suspected fraud to local law enforcement or government agencies that regularly address fraud cases. Even if someone suffers criminal or government prosecution for defrauding you, you may not receive compensation for your losses unless you file a fraud lawsuit. So after you report the fraud to authorities, you should seek out legal advice to protect your own interests. If you are unfamiliar with fraud litigation lawyers, you can ask others for referrals. In many places, bar associations offer legal referral services that can help match you with a lawyer with fraud expertise.

Once you identify some fraud litigation attorneys whom you may wish to work with, gather all documentation and information related to your case and make copies of it. This documentation can help lawyers make a quick determination as to whether filing a fraud lawsuit is in your best interest. After talking with attorneys and doing research on their background and credentials, you should select the attorney with whom you feel most comfortable and whom you believe can best represent your case. Once you select an attorney, you should ask about filing a lawsuit in court. Your attorney may try and contact the defendant before filing a lawsuit to see if he is willing to offer you a financial settlement without going to court.

If the defendant refuses a financial settlement, then your lawyer will likely file the fraud lawsuit at the pertinent courthouse. In many cases, your lawyer will still attempt to settle the case without going to trial, as this can save you a great deal of time and money. If the defendant refuses to settle the case, however, be prepared for a lengthy period of waiting while your case goes to trial and works its way through the court system.

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