A pleading paper template is a document file with a court before a case. This court document includes an outline of your defense or your claim. The main objective of this court document is to explain the court and the other involved party what has allegedly transpired.
Pleading papers are important. This is because they display all of the allegations to the fact relevant to your case.
Table of Contents
- 1 What is pleading paper?
- 2 When do you require a pleading paper?
- 3 How to format a pleading paper?
- 4 How do you edit pleading paper?
- 5 How to create pleading paper in MS Word?
- 6 Conclusion:
- 7 Faqs (Frequently Asked Questions)
- 8 What are the different types of pleading papers?
- 9 Is it possible to represent myself in court and file my own pleading papers?
What is pleading paper?
A pleading paper is a court document that outlines your defense or your claim. This document is filed with a court before a case. Clearly explaining to the court and the other involved party what has allegedly transpired is the main purpose of this document.
Since pleadings present all of the allegations to the fact relevant to your case so they are important. Keep in mind that this document doesn’t include all of the proof which you will depend on to prove your defense or claim.
When do you require a pleading paper?
In civil cases, here are the most common pleadings or motions that warrant a court document template;
This is a written document that displays a victim’s case. It contains a description of what the defendant did or didn’t do. The document also contains actions that led to a breach in their duty and caused the victim harm.
The latter will get a time frame to respond with an “answer” after a plaintiff files a complaint against a defendant. For an “affirmative defense,” this is a short document that contains the response to pleads and allegations. It challenges the defendant of any liability.
There are some situations where a defendant may select to pursue their own damages from the similar incident. This is the counterclaim and might apply in instances such as car accidents.
This claim includes a party on one side of the argument filing a claim against the other individual who is on the same side.
The most common pre-trial motions ask a judge what proof they can use and any motions to dismiss the case.
After the conclusion of a trial, there are specific procedures any of the parties may select to invoke. Since these motions require a lot of solid proof so they rarely succeed.
How to format a pleading paper?
If you have a complicated case or one with a lot of issues, then before drafting your legal pleading, it’s suggested to seek the advice of a lawyer. However, follow the below format for your pleading paper;
Learn the requirements
To provide the necessary information, some courts have pleading forms where you either check a box or fill in the blanks. This makes your whole process easier. At first, check whether your court has form pleadings. You can get this information listed on the court’s website. In case, the court has no website then call, and asks them.
Furthermore, every state has its own local rules that address the formatting of pleadings. These local rules are also available on the court’s website. You can also find an example to copy for drafting your document. This also makes thing easier for you.
Format your document
You must abide in order to write on special paper. You can buy this paper online from the court’s website. For this document, the paper used is a legal paper. This paper has numbers from 1 to 28 on the left-hand margin. Next, insert a caption that indicates the court where you will file your case. Along with, specify the parties involved, the case number, and even the type of case.
On the left side of the document, state the plaintiff’s complete name. Input the word “Plaintiff” on the next line. Then, input letter ‘v’ two spaces down i.e. an abbreviation of “versus.” Again, two spaces down, enter the defendant’s complete name. Write the word ‘defendant’ on the next line.
The clerk of the court will assign a case number after filing the case. In case, you are defendant, you can see this number on your copy of the document. Enter “Case No” and leave it blank if you’re the one filing the complaint. In the case, when you have listed information of the parties involved, then start drafting the body of your document by moving two spaces down. Here, you include the relevant information you want the judge to know.
By using proper format, present this entire information. You have to assign number to each of the paragraphs if your draft is an answer to a complaint. You should also ensure that you use two spaces for the whole body. All headings should be underlines, capitalized, and bold. In addition, at the bottom and in the middle of each of the pages, add page numbers.
In the next step, sign the document and add the date. Move down two lines again when you have finished the body of your pleading. Now, you have to affix your signature. Also, write the date when you created the document and under your signature, write your name.
You should also attach a certificate of services with your pleading paper. At the bottom of the page, attach this certificate. At the centre of the page, type the phrase “Certificate of Service” by using all capital letters. In the end, mention that you gave a copy of the document to the other involved party.
How do you edit pleading paper?
The editing of the pleading paper may include the following;
- On the right and left side, there is the width of the margins.
- Include the number of lines with numbers.
- The point and font sizes
- At the right and left sides of the document, there are the vertical border lines.
Due to this, different sites may provide different options for the requirements of your legal pleading template. If you want to download a template, you can have the option to customize it according to your need.
For legal pleadings, MS Word provides you some of the features and styles. While choosing Toolbars under the View drop-down menu, activate the Pleadings toolbar by checking the box.
How to create pleading paper in MS Word?
Here are the steps to follow while making a pleading paper in MS Word;
Launch MS Word
- Click on New on the File menu.
- Click on Legal pleadings
- The pleading Wizard program starts when you double click on PLEADING WIZARD. It takes you through the steps to make your own template.
- Select Create a new pleading template for another court.
- Click on the Name of the Court and then enter the details.
- The alignment should be at the Center.
- Font: Times New Roman
- Line Spacing: Double
- Page Size: 8.5” x11”
- Margins: 1-inch on all sides
- Do you want line numbers?: Yes
- Start pleading at line: 1
- Line numbers start at: 1
- Line numbers in increments of: 1
- Borders: Right – Single, Left – Double
- Caption Box: Style 1
Details at the starting of the pleading
- Attorney and firm names
- In the Footer: summary of pleading title
- Do you want a signature block: Yes
- Sign with: Plain
- Date line
- File Name
In conclusion, a pleading paper template is a tool used to draft a paper that you file in a court of law. This document triggers a complaint against another person in a civil court. In your case, this document can act as a formal notification to a judge. Follow the proper format in order to make an effective pleading paper.
Faqs (Frequently Asked Questions)
What are the different types of pleading papers?
There are different types of pleading papers which may involve;
Every type has its own purpose and is used at different stages of a legal proceeding.
Is it possible to represent myself in court and file my own pleading papers?
Yes, it is possible to represent yourself in court and file your own pleading paper. But, you should take the assistance of a lawyer or legal professional because legal processes are complex. If you want to present your case effectively then you must have a thorough understanding of the law and the rules of procedure.