You might think stipulations can only complicate things, but they can actually simplify and streamline your court case. Stipulations function as a set of ground rules and can focus your case on what’s actually in dispute. An experienced lawyer can agree on stipulations with the opposing side, but it’s helpful to know what kinds of agreements they’ll be making beforehand.
What is a stipulation?
A stipulation is an agreement between attorneys on opposite sides of a case, designed to shorten litigation or make the case simpler. Attorneys can stipulate to virtually any facts involved in the case, or to agree on certain procedures that will be allowed. The idea behind a stipulation is that it will allow the case to skip past certain agreed-upon facts and move to the matters that are in dispute.
What are stipulations made?
Stipulations are completely voluntary. You and your lawyer cannot be ordered to stipulate to anything you do not agree with. If both sides agree, however, the stipulation can be documented and the court will enforce it. Courts often encourage stipulations because they make cases simpler.
What are some common stipulations?
Some common stipulations include:
- Agreeing to use copies rather than original documents as evidence.
- Agreeing upon what a witness would have said if brought in, based on statements before trial, rather than taking the time to actually question them.
- Agreeing which evidence will or will not be used
- Agreeing which specific issues will be tried
Is a stipulation good or bad for my case?
In most cases stipulations are good for you. Because they shorten litigation, they also reduce the costs of your case. They can also help you move toward a conclusion faster, and potentially get your financial recovery as soon as possible. A good lawyer will not stipulate to anything that would weaken your case—only to issues not worth revisiting.
Have you been injured? John Foy & Associates offers a free consultation with some of the most experienced and respected personal injury lawyers in Georgia. Fill out the form to your right or call us at 404-400-4000 to get your FREE consultation today.