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Rule 500.2. Definitions (2013)

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In Part V of these Rules of Civil Procedure:

(a) "Answer" is the written response that a party who is sued must file with the court after being served with a citation.
(b) "Citation" is the court-issued document required to be served upon a party to inform the party that it has been sued.
(c) "Claim" is the legal theory and alleged facts that, if proven, entitle a party to relief against another party in court.
(d) "Clerk" is a person designated by the judge as a justice court clerk, or the judge if there is no clerk available.
(e) "Counterclaim" is a claim brought by a party who has been sued against the party who filed the lawsuit, for example, a defendant suing a plaintiff.
(f) "County court" is the county court, statutory county court, or district court in a particular county with jurisdiction over appeals of civil cases from justice court.
(g) "Cross-claim" is a claim brought by one party against another party on the same side of a lawsuit. For example, if a plaintiff sues two defendants, the defendants can seek relief against each other by means of a cross-claim.
(h) "Default judgment" is a judgment awarded to a plaintiff when the defendant fails to answer and dispute the plaintiff's claims in the lawsuit.
(i) "Defendant" is a party who is sued, including a plaintiff against whom a counterclaim is filed.
(j) "Defense" is an assertion by a defendant that the plaintiff is not entitled to relief from the court.
(k) "Discovery" is the process through which parties obtain information from each other in order to prepare for trial or enforce a judgment. The term does not refer to any information that a party is entitled to under applicable law.
(l) "Dismissed without prejudice" means a case has been dismissed but has not been finally decided and may be refiled.
(m) "Dismissed with prejudice" means a case has been dismissed and finally decided and may not be refiled.
(n) "Judge" is a justice of the peace.
(o) "Judgment" is a final order by the court that states the relief, if any, a party is entitled to or must provide.
(p) "Jurisdiction" is the authority of the court to hear and decide a case.
(q) "Motion" is a request that the court make a specified ruling or order.
(r) "Notice" is a document prepared and delivered by the court or a party stating that something is required of the party receiving the notice.
(s) "Party" is a person or entity involved in the case that is either suing or being sued, including all plaintiffs, defendants, and third parties that have been joined in the case.
(t) "Petition" is a formal written application stating a party's claims and requesting relief from the court. It is the first document filed with the court to begin a lawsuit.
(u) "Plaintiff" is a party who sues, including a defendant who files a counterclaim.
(v) "Pleading" is a written document filed by a party, including a petition and an answer, that states a claim or defense and outlines the relief sought.
(w) "Relief' is the remedy a party requests from the court, such as the recovery of money or the return of property.
(x) "Serve" and "service" are delivery of citation as required by Rule 501.2, or of a document as required by Rule 501.4.
(y) "Sworn" means signed in front of someone authorized to take oaths, such as a notary, or signed under penalty of perjury. Filing a false sworn document can result in criminal prosecution.
(z) "Third party claim" is a claim brought by a party being sued against someone who is not yet a party to the case.

Added by order of April 15th, 2013, eff. Aug. 31, 2013.

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