After you have decided to take the case, the first thing to do is prepare a legal memo of the case. A memo gives an analysis of the case, identifying the legal theories, the key issues, and the potential defenses. One of the best ways to identify the legal theories is to go through the standard jury instructions. These instructions set forth all of the elements of each of your legal theories and what you have to prove.
You’ll want to look at the documents in the case, interview people, and do some legal research, early on, to determine whether you have a viable claim. Once you have done all that research, then you are going to go about drafting the complaint, if you are representing the plaintiffs. Drafting a complaint is very important because if you plead something in your complaint and at a later time, you want to change what you have pled, it is possible that the court can prevent you from doing that. The court may not allow you to amend the complaint if you have made something that is referred to as a judicial admission. You must be careful when you are drafting a complaint.
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