Personal Injury

Stages of a Personal Injury Claim

Seeking a personal injury compensation can be demanding on your time and effort. But you need to do it in order to achieve justice for the damages you attained in an accident. There are several stages in the process of a personal injury claim and the more you know about them, the more ready you will be to face them.

Meeting with a personal injury attorney – If you were involved in an accident, consulting a lawyer specializing in personal injury cases will give you a clearer view of your case and advise you on what succeeding steps you should do. The attorney should outline the legal process, explain their legal fees, legal costs and give the client realistic expectations.

Personal Injury Claims – Prior to filing a personal injury lawsuit, an injury lawyer will work with the claim(s) adjuster of the at fault party. During this phase, your attorney will present your case orally and with a comprehensive written “demand”, which outlines the facts of the case, the medical treatment, and injuries. At this time, your injury attorney will make a demand for monetary compensation.

Claims Settlement – Settlement can happen any time before the judgment comes out. In some cases, a pre-trial settlement can be more advantageous to the client – this avoids legal costs, a risk associated with jury trials and decreases the natural stress that occurs during the litigation process.

Pleadings – The initial documents filed in court at the beginning of a claim are called pleadings. With the help of your lawyer, you will file a document called a “complaint”, which outlines the legal basis for your claim along with the facts of your specific case. The defendant will then file a document called an “answer” to address your claims. He can also file a counter-claim if he thinks you are at fault.

Discovery – One of the principles of the American legal system is the full disclosure to all parties of all the facts relevant to the case. The disclosure of the facts are accomplished in the discovery stage and it can be done in three ways – interrogatories, document production, and depositions. Your personal injury lawyer should guide you throughout the discovery phase of the case. At this time, your attorney will seek to obtain all available information regarding the case.

Pre-trial Motions – In this stage, lawyers from both parties ask the judge to rule in certain matters about the case. Some of these motions can end the trial before it begins or exclude certain evidences or testimonies.

Trial – During the trial for a personal injury claim, the plaintiff will present evidence and argue that the defendant’s negligence caused his/her injuries while the defendant will try to refute the charges and prove that he/she the following: 1) The defendant was not negligent; and 2) Your injuries were not caused by the subject accident. A judge or a jury (usually a jury) will render a verdict and determine both fault and damages.

Collecting money – Even if you won your personal injury claim, the other party may not immediately pay you the amount granted by the court. Your personal injury attorney will assist you in obtaining financial compensation you were awarded at trial.

Appeals – Personal injury cases are subject to appeals if one of the parties involved believes a legal basis for an appeal can be made. The appeals court can reverse the decision if it finds an error during the trial proceedings that contributed to the trial court’s decision.

Litigating a personal injury case from start to finish demands considerable time, expertise and financial resources. Retaining an experienced personal injury attorney will provide you with the best opportunity for success in your claim for damages. Personal injury lawyers in Floral Park, NY will answer all of your questions and provide you with a skilled advocate to press your case forward.