There are tens of millions of visits to the emergency department for personal injuries every year. Whether through malice, negligence, or plain old bad luck, our health-and-safety-focused world can’t seem to help but hurt itself. But too often, the victims of these injuries are dissuaded from seeking recompense for their trauma because of ignorance about what a personal injury case entails.
Well, we’re here to dispel that ignorance.
Join us as we drill down into the discovery process and demystify the facts that surround the process of personal injury litigation. One day, you might be glad you did.
Step 1: Interrogatories
A pretty scary-sounding word for a pretty dull part of the process. Interrogatories, as the name implies, are part of the legal discovery phase in which the involved parties ask each other questions. Think of it as a fact-finding portion of the discovery process, where anything and everything related to the lawsuit gets exchanged between the involved parties.
This could be stuff like plaintiff medical histories, contact info, or even witnesses to whatever incident caused the injury. This is the part where the facts of the case are hammered out.
Step 2: Request For Production
This is where the discovery process moves into the physical realm. At the request for production stage, attorneys start asking each other for real, physical documents, sometimes to evidence statements made in the interrogatory stage.
So, for example, say you were working with sweetlaw.com in a personal injury case. They might be asked to furnish the other side’s attorneys with documents attesting to your medical history if you’d claimed to have a diagnosis of something during the interrogatories phase. Pretty simple!
Step 3: Request for Admission
This part of the personal injury litigation process is the simplest of them all. One side submits their factual statement and the other has to approve or object to the substance of it. If the opposing party submits a statement that, in your view, distorts the facts, this is your chance to sort that out.
Step 4: Deposition
A term we’ve all heard on crime procedurals but which none of us can really explain. In reality, a deposition is just a statement made outside the courtroom which is transcribed by a court reporter for use later on within the courtroom. Depositions are often taken pretty early and describe ‘what happened’ as one party or another sees things. It’s best to take them early since minor details are often quickly forgotten.
The Discovery Process, Rediscovered
So there you have it, a quick but comprehensive guide to the discovery process. If you ever find yourself on one side or another of personal injury litigation, you’ll be very glad that you gave this guide a quick read to prepare you for what’s expected during the proceedings of the court case.
Who knows, it may even give you the crucial advantage you need to win!
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