Answer

Answer in the United States

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A pleading submitted by a civil defendant as a formal written response to a plaintiffs complaint. The answer may simply admit or deny the assertions of the plaintiff. An admission eliminates the need to engage in fact-finding. A denial, on the other hand, focuses the fact issue(s) that must be resolved at trial. Among the things an answer may claim is a defense that asserts certain facts that prevent the plaintiff from winning a judgment as a matter of law.

See Also

Counter Claim (Civil Process);pleading, 239.

Analysis and Relevance

Answers are governed by rules of civil procedure. They are generally required to assert all the defenses that will be offered, although supplemental answers are permitted. A supplemental answer is filed to amend a previously submitted answer by correction, addition, or clarification. The answer should contain discussion of any counter claim the defendant might have against the plaintiff. A response to a counter claim might come in the form of a reply, a special and defensive pleading that reacts specifically to the counter claim and the new dimension that adds to a civil action.

Notes and References

  1. Definition of Answer from the American Law Dictionary, 1991, California

Answer Definition

In Equity Pleading. A defense in writing, made by a defendant to the charges contained in a bill or information filed by the plaintiff against him in a court of equity. In Code Pleading. The defendant’s pleading in any civil action. In Practice. The statement of a witness in response to a question.

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Legal Issue for Attorneys

In Equity Pleading. A defense in writing, made by a defendant to the charges contained in a bill or information filed by the plaintiff against him in a court of equity. In Code Pleading. The defendant’s pleading in any civil action. In Practice. The statement of a witness in response to a question.

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Notice

This definition of Answer Is based on the The Cyclopedic Law Dictionary . This definition needs to be proofread..

Practical Information

Note: Some of this information was last updated in 1982

The defendant’s formal written statement of defense, signed by his or her attorney. It denies some, or all, of the allegations of the complaint (in U.S. law) and sets forth the grounds of the defendant’s defense. It may also set up claims the defendant has against the plaintiff as counterclaims. The answer consists of the following parts: (1) caption; (2) introduction; (3) denials of allegations of the complaint; (4) counterclaims, if any; (5) “wherefore” clause; prayer, if answer contains a counterclaim; (6) signature of attorney for defendant; (7) verification if the complaint is verified.

(Revised by Ann De Vries)

What is Answer?

For a meaning of it, read Answer in the Legal Dictionary here. Browse and search more U.S. and international free legal definitions and legal terms related to Answer.

Meaning of Answer

In plain or simple terms, Answer means: A pleading by which the defendant responds to the plaintiff’s complaint.

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See Also

  • Legal Topics.
  • Civil Procedure.

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    Answer Definition in the context of the Federal Court System

    The formal written statement by a defendant responding to a civil complaint and setting forth the grounds for his or her defense.

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