Have you been served with a lawsuit? Being sued can be one of the most stressful and frustrating experiences in life. However, don't panic. Filing a response to a lawsuit is the first step and one of the most important things you can do in order to protect yourself. For starters, call an attorney immediately. Let your attorney know when a response to the lawsuit is due as you must file a response by a certain deadline. After you file the response, your attorney will probably start talking to the plaintiff's attorney to explore settlement opportunities. Before a lawsuit goes to trial, the parties are required to engage in what is called the discovery phase, during which a variety of information will be exchanged about the case. There may be certain hearings scheduled with the judge to both determine specific legal issues and try to keep the case moving along efficiently. While most cases settle out of court if the parties cannot reach a settlement, then ultimately there will be a trial. Either a judge or a jury will decide whether the plaintiff should win or not.