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What Happens if an Injury Claim Goes to Court

Most personal injury cases go to court after a 12 months period passes without the case being settled. For most the thought of their case going to court can be scary. Only a small percentage of personal injury claims go to court because most issues are settled outside of court. If you were to hear that your case was going to proceed to the court what it often means is that the case is simply in progress. The question on most plaintiffs’ minds is what happens if an injury claim goes to court?

Most of the personal injury compensation claims cases that end up in court are complex and are often for cases where an accident claim that is over $25,000 which both parties have been unable to settle out of the courtroom. If you need help understanding your claim or wish to file a case, then call to speak with our injury attorney in Decatur Georgia today for a free consultation!

If the insurance company of the defendant refuses to either offer fair compensation to the victim or refuses to pay compensation at all the plaintiff can file a lawsuit. The plaintiff can proceed to file a lawsuit in an injury court hearing for damages if they are within the statute of limitation in Georgia.

Why Would a Personal Injury Case Go to Court?

It is not common for a lot of personal injury cases in Georgia to go to trial. In fact, out of the many personal injury cases, 90% of these cases end up getting resolved via an out-of-court settlement. However, a personal injury attorney can take your case to accident trial if the insurance company refuses to make their client a fair settlement offer or settlement agreement.

judge signing paperwork next to a gavel, Injury Claim Goes to Court

If you have been injured or have obtained injuries as a result of another person’s negligence in Georgia you will need to hire a personal injury attorney. The personal injury lawyer that you hire will need to be a skilled negotiator and an experienced trial attorney.

In the case where your claim goes through you are likely going to receive damages after the trial period is over or after negotiations are successful. The damages that an injured victim receives are aimed at compensating them for their future and current medical expenses, emotional suffering, physical pain, lost wages both current and future wages, as well as other losses that are related to the accident and injury you have.

An accident lawyer may not be able to tell you the specific amount that you are to receive before the case is finalized. The specific amount that you are likely to receive depends on the nature as well as the extent of the injury or injuries that the victim has incurred.

What Happens at the Court Hearing?

Georgia is known to be an at-fault state. What this means is that personal injury victims are first expected to turn to insurance companies to settle their accident insurance claim settlement before turning to the courts for compensation. This law is there in order to help streamline the legal system in Georgia and ensure that the common cases in the state are not clogging up the judicial resources.

FAQ: How to file an injury claim in Georgia?

You will receive a docket number once you file your accident lawsuit and it is in the system. This will allow you to be able to look up the docket online so you can be able to keep track of everything in one particular place.

Pretrial Stages

The first thing that your attorney will do is to serve the defendant a complaint. The complaint will contain details describing the accident and the injuries that you have incurred as a result in detail. The document will have supporting copies of your medical bills, medical reports, and invoice for damages. The complaint will ultimately have a clearly laid out demand for compensation. If the defendant does not cooperate you may have to take them to civil court.

The next step in the process is the discovery step. In the discovery step, both sides request information and they ask questions directed toward one another so they can figure out what occurred during the accident. The questions being asked may need a boost through motions to the judge. The motions to the judge example include motions to compel discovery.

The discovery step includes the process of deposition. A deposition is the process of questioning that happens when an individual is under oath and is carried out by the opposing counsel. The questioning is transcribed by a court reporter for use in a personal injury trial. The discovery phase can as well include an independent medical examination that is likely to be carried out by a neutral doctor.

Going Through Mediation

The judge is likely to recommend that plaintiff and defendant go through an alternative dispute resolution such as mediation or arbitration if they are unable to reach an agreement. A mediator is meant to act as a go-between between the parties involved when they are having difficult discussions.

judge's stand with books and a gavel, Injury Claim Goes to Court

If the defendant chooses to settle or if they reach an agreement with the accident victim further legal proceedings may not be necessary and each party can avoid an expensive and time-consuming process. 

However, the lawsuit process progresses if no favorable settlement is agreed upon.

The Trial

If a settlement cannot be reached through mediation the judge will set a trial date. During the trial period, lawyers from both sides present witnesses and question them. Lawyers from both sides will argue their case in front of a jury or judge. A jury trial is good when the facts of a case are easy to convey and straightforward. On the other hand, when a case's facts are complex and involve legal theories that are more intricate, then bench trials are preferable.

The judge or the jury weighs the facts presented during a formal court hearing, deliberates, and makes a final verdict on the personal injury compensation.

The Post-Trial Stage

If one or both of the parties is not pleased with the final verdict made after the end of the claims process they can choose to appeal the case in the court of appeals.

FAQ: What is the average settlement for a car accident?

Can You Appeal an Injury Claim if it goes to Court?

The losing side can appeal to a higher court. Most of the time their argument is that a judge made a wrong ruling or that the evidence was not enough to make the verdict that was made. In some instances, though both sides can choose to appeal if they are not happy with the decision.

There are cases that take years to resolve. It is crucial to have a personal injury attorney that will help you through the process. At Mark's Law Group, a personal injury lawyer can help with your lawsuit if it goes to court. Our personal injury law firm can help you get a reasonable settlement and walk you through the entire process. Give our legal team a call

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