As a victim, if you’ll be participating in your personal injury lawsuit’s trial, then you need to know what to expect. Every civil lawsuit is different, so your trial will be unique. However, there are some common elements that you can keep in mind.
Your case begins when your attorney files a complaint against the other party that caused your injury. That complaint asks to be compensated for the injury caused by the defendant. After this and several other steps occur, you’ll be prepared for trial if a settlement is not possible.
What happens when you go to trial for a personal injury?
When you go to a civil trial, you’ll go through several phases. These include:
- Selecting the jury
- Listening to and giving an opening statement
- Listening to witnesses
- Cross-examining witnesses
- Jury instruction
- Jury deliberation
It is your attorney’s job to prepare your case in a way that puts you in the best position to convince the judge and jury that the award you are seeking is fair. You want them to understand that you have been victimized as a result of the other party’s actions and that you’re seeking fair compensation as a result.
What happens if you win your judgment?
If you win the case, then you’ll have a judgment in your favor. At that time, you can collect the damages. However, it’s not always that easy. Depending on who the defendant is and how much money they have access to, the defendant may not pay at all or may pay only a portion of the judgment. If that happens, your attorney may have to help you by:
- Looking into the debtor’s sources of income, so they can be garnished
- Having a lien placed on the debtor’s property
Every situation is a little bit different, so it’s a good idea to talk through what could happen if you go to trial with the attorney you choose. Your attorney will help prepare your case for the best chance of success. If you win, they’ll work with you and take steps to make sure you get the compensation you’ve been awarded.