Plaintiff or Defendant Adversary Complaints
An adversary proceeding begins with the filing of an adversary complaint by the plaintiff. Once the complaint is filed the clerk of court issues a summons. The plaintiff then is responsible for serving the summons and complaint on all defendants. Most service in bankruptcy court is perfected by only putting the summons and complaint in the regular U.S. Postal Service mail. Once the defendants receive the summons and complaint they have to file a responsive pleading. The defendant typically has 30 days from the date the complaint was filed, not from the date of service, to file a responsive pleading. After a response pleading is filed the court typically sets a pretrial conference so the discovery and trial deadlines can be set.
After the pretrial, discovery is typically the next step. Discovery can be depositions, requests to produce, interrogatories, or many other avenues. Once discovery is complete typically trial is right around the corner. After the trial is complete the judge will enter a judgment that lays out his ruling. Just because a judgment is entered does not mean there are no options. Appeals or motions to reconsider may be necessary.