Going to Court

Resolving your legal problem without going to court

If you or the judge thinks your legal issue can be resolved outside of the courtroom, here are some options you can try.

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Understanding the Basics

See what you need to know to take action.

It's possible to deal with legal problems without going all the way through a hearing. In many cases, this can be a faster way to get to a solution that works for everyone. In Ohio, there are several ways to do this. 

  • Negotiation. This is the fastest way to work out a legal issue between you and someone else, like a landlord, roommate or creditor. It rarely hurts to try negotiating before getting the courts involved. Learn more about how to negotiate.
  • Settlement. If you or the other side has already filed a case in court, that doesn't mean you can't reach an agreement before the judge orders one. This agreement is called a settlement. Make sure that you get any agreements in writing. 
  • Mediation. Sometimes when you file a case in court, the judge will suggest mediation. This means that a trained professional will work with you and the other side to come up with a solution that you both agree to. Learn more about what happens in mediation.

These options are voluntary. The decision to try one or not is up to you and the other side. Sometimes, these options can be faster and easier. They're also private, meaning that details from your personal life won't be shared in a public courtroom .

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