Commencement of ActionIn Washington state, a civil action to be heard in superior court is began by either:

  1. Serving a copy of the Complaint and Summons on the defendant AND then filing the summons, complaint and notice of service within 14 days after it has been served; or
  2. Filing the complaint in the Superior Court with jurisdiction over the case and then serving the complaint and summons on the named defendant.

A complaint is the document you file to commence and action.  It states the parities, facts, allegations, and relief being sought from the defendant.

If you commence an action you must pay the filing fee and ensure that service of the complaint and summons is property completed.  To know the proper filing fee, you can call your local court clerk’s office, or go onto the superior court website.  Most superior court websites will have a fee schedule accessible through their website.  Your local court may have additional rules of procedure that must be adhered to.  You should call your local court clerk’s office to find out if there are additional requirements.

The rule of Procedure governing how an action is commenced in Superior Courts of Washington is as follows:


  • Except as provided in rule 4.1, a civil action is commenced by service of a copy of a summons together with a copy of a complaint, as provided in rule 4 or by filing a complaint. Upon written demand by any other party, the plaintiff instituting the action shall pay the filing fee and file the summons and complaint within 14 days after service of the demand or the service shall be void. An action shall not be deemed commenced for the purpose of tolling any statute of limitations except as provided in RCW 4.16.170.
  • Tolling Statute. (Reserved. See RCW 4.16.170.)
  • Obtaining Jurisdiction. (Reserved. See RCW 4.28.020.)
  • Lis Pendens. (Reserved. See RCW 4.28.320 and 4.28.160.)

Accident Attorney – Kennewick, Richland, and Pasco, WA

If you have been injured in an accident then call the experienced attorneys at Parke Gordon Law Firm in Tri-Cities today to discuss your case.  The attorneys at Parke Gordon Law Firm believe that everyone deserves good representation, not just the big insurance companies.  Call 509-582-7274 today for a free consultation.

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