Going through the legal process can take month or even years. If you’ve attempted to reach a settlement with the other side, but you believe they aren’t offering a fair deal, you can take the dispute to the next step—trial. When you’re going to trial, you should be able to rely on your personal injury lawyer to be prepared and to help you prepare so your side presents your case as best as possible. Your Marion personal injury lawyer from Prince Law Firm will go over what to expect so you feel confident and ready when you have your day in court.
Our lawyers understand that this step can be nerve-wracking. When a case reaches this point, there are a few outcomes that can happen. If the judge favors with you, then you have a chance of recovering full compensation for your injuries and damages. In a settlement, this may not have been possible because the other side was trying to negotiate. However, if the judge sides with the defendant, then you may not recover any compensation at all. While this risk may weigh on you, it’s important to know that we’re going to do everything we can to show your side of the case and fight to recover the compensation you deserve. Let’s go over what you can expect so you’ll know more about the process and how it will go.
Arriving at the Courthouse
When you’re going to court, know that you want to present your best self. You don’t want to feel underdressed or out of place. Dress professionally, like you’re going to a job interview. Turn off your cell phone—you may even consider leaving it behind so you don’t have to worry about anything interrupting court proceedings.
Always give yourself extra time so you’re not rushing or worrying about being late. Know that when you get there, you will need to go through security and then you’ll need to go to the appropriate room. If you are running behind and you’re hurrying to the room, you’ll feel nervous, out of breath, and you won’t be focused on what’s ahead. Arriving with about 15 minutes before you’re scheduled to be there will give you time to calmly get where you need to go.
The Trial Process
During the trial, there are several steps to go through so both sides can present their case. First, there are opening statements. While these are not considered evidence, it gives the attorney an opportunity to provide their view of what the evidence will show.
As the plaintiff, you will then tell your side of the story. You’ll recount how the accident happened, whether it was a car accident, slip and fall, or other form of personal injury. You’ll also talk about how you were hurt and how the injuries and losses have affected your life. While this moment can make anyone feel nervous, this is your time to make your voice heard. Our attorneys will help you prepare to speak in a courtroom so you’re ready to say what happened.
Your attorney may call expert witnesses to offer testimony on what happened to you. These accounts can also help strengthen your side of the story, especially if you’re involved in a medical malpractice case.
Then, the opposing side’s attorney can ask questions in a process called cross-examination. They may ask questions designed to show inconsistencies in your story in an effort to reduce your credibility. We’ll go over the ways they may do this so you’re ready to answer. After the opposing attorney is done, your attorney can then ask questions to clarify anything brought up during cross-examination.
When this is done, then it’s the defense’s turn to do the same thing. They’ll state their side of the story, call witnesses, and your attorney can cross-examine them as well.
After both sides have stated their case, called witnesses, and presented evidence, then it goes to closing arguments. The attorneys will once again argue why they believe their side is in the right and will likely call back to important evidence and testimony given during the trial.
The judge will instruct the jury on the law and how to follow it when coming to their conclusion. When the jury makes their decision, the judge will read it. It’s important to remain calm during this process. While you may be relieved to hear good news, still try to stay as calm as possible. If you do not receive the news you wished, outbursts of emotion will not help. There may still be options if the ruling is not in your favor. If there are steps to take afterward, you can go over this with your lawyer.
Seek Your Legal Options with Prince Law Firm
When you’re seeking justice, it’s important to have experienced, dedicated representation on your side. The lawyers at Prince Law Firm work diligently to get our clients full and fair compensation when they’ve been wrongfully injured because of negligence. We’re prepared to take your case to trial and help you every step of the way. To start going over your options, get in touch with us today.