WHAT HAPPENS AFTER THE DEFENDANT ANSWERS THE COMPLAINT?
Immediately after all defendants have answered the Complaint, the case is said to be "At-Issue," and the plaintiff or defendant is then eligible to request the court to set a trial date.
In Superior Court, several months to 180 days after the Complaint is filed, the parties or their attorneys will appear in court for a Status Conference. At the Status Conference the court will discuss a possible trial date and/or potential Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR). ADR can include such methods of eventual resolution as arbitration or mediation with a retired judge.
In Municipal Court, the party requesting the trial must file a "Memorandum to Set Case for Trial," and the court will, at a later time, notify the parties of a trial or arbitration date.