Civil cases

In a civil case, a dispute between private individuals or corporations is decided impartially by a court. The matter may pertain e.g. to tort liability, inheritance disputes, the cancellation of a transaction or the rent for an apartment. The district court makes enforceable decisions also in matters pertaining to undisputed demands for payment or evictions.

Application for a summons

A civil case becomes pending when a written application for a summons is delivered by the plaintiff to the registry of the district court. The application for a summons may also be filed electronically.

The application for a summons must contain the name of the court, the names of the plaintiff and defendant, the attorneys and the witnesses, as well as their contact information.

In the application for a summons, the plaintiff explains what he or she demands of the defendant and on what grounds. The contract or other agreement the demand is based on must be appended to it. The plaintiff must also name the evidence, i.e. written evidence and/or witnesses, in the matter. A claim for the compensation of legal costs may also be made.

A court charge will be collected from the plaintiff in a civil case. If the party cannot bear the costs of court proceedings, these may under certain circumstances be covered from state funds (legal aid).

If the matter pertains to a simple undisputed debt or e.g. an eviction, the contents of the application for a summons need not be as detailed as in disputed cases. Nor does the application for a summons need to contain information on the evidence in that case.

Persons who file applications for a summons often, for instance professional collection agencies, may file these also electronically. More information about electronic filing of applications for a summons.

Published 6.9.2017