If you want to file a personal injury lawsuit and want to know what will ensue if you do, here are the different stages you can expect in a personal injury case.
Meet with an Attorney
The very first thing you should do if you believe you have a viable personal injury case is to consult with a reputable personal injury attorney. He or she can determine if you have a case and work with you to figure out exactly what to do next. Make sure you do your research and read more about the attorney’s reputation before agreeing to work with them.
To start the case, your lawyer will need to fill out and submit all relevant paperwork. Some motions will involve Complaints and Answers, among others. Again, your attorney should be able to explain all of these to you and help you figure out what to include.
Discovery and Fact-Finding
The next step of the process is for opposing sides of the case to share all pertinent evidence and information. This will help establish facts throughout the case.
Motions to Dismiss
In many cases, a case may not even go to trial. In these instances, cases are resolved by a Motion to Dismiss along with others that ask the court to cut the case off before a single trial date is established.
In a majority of personal injury cases, a settlement will be reached before the case ever goes to trial. There are many factors that go into a settlement, which your attorney will be able to help you learn about.
What Occurs During Trial
There are many elements that go into a court case, unlike what you might see on TV or in the movies. Some of these include jury selection, witness testimony, opening arguments, and others that lead to the jury’s verdict, depending on the extent of the case. Some cases may require more deliberation than others.
Collecting Money Following Judgment
Winning a trial isn’t all that’s needed. You will likely need to do more work to collect the money. You can learn from your lawyer what to do if you want to collect on a judgment.
Appealing a Decision
Depending on the outcome of the case, you may decide to appeal a court’s decision, or the opposing party might do so. You can also get details about this from your attorney, who can help you appeal if necessary.
In the end, there are many different aspects of a personal injury lawsuit to consider if you want to build a case. While far from simple in many cases, you can work with a lawyer to learn about every step you need to take and make the right decisions along the way. Whether your case ends in an out-of-court settlement or a full-blown trial, you should always consult with your lawyer to determine how to go about every stage of the process, from beginning to end.