For a civil suit where the plaintiff is in one state and the defendant is in another, where can a claim be filed?

Asked on June 24, 2012 under Business Law, Maryland


S.L,. Member, California Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 8 years ago | Contributor

A lawsuit can be filed in the state where the plaintiff resides or in the state where the defendant resides or in the state where the claim arose.  For convenience purposes such as court appearances and filing documents, the plaintiff should file in the state where he/she resides.  If the plaintiff has missed the statute of limitations in his/her state, the plaintiff should file the lawsuit in the state where the defendant resides or in the state where the claim arose if the statute of limitations has not expired in those other states.

If the plaintiff files in the state where the defendant resides, the plaintiff should have a process server in or near the city where the defendant is located serve the defendant with the summons and complaint (the complaint is the lawsuit attached to the summons).  Process servers are listed under attorney services in the Yellow Pages or online.

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