Personal injury cases are sort of like icebergs – it's what you don't see that makes the biggest impact. Once you turn your car accident case over to a personal injury attorney, the work that will end up making the biggest impact on your case might just happen out of sight. Read on to find out more about the things your lawyer is doing while you continue to recuperate from your injuries.
The Investigation Uncovers Facts
A good personal injury case depends on proving who was at fault for the accident and then proving the damages of the victim. After you get your lawyer started by signing a contract and giving permission to access your medical records, it's time to uncover some facts. If fault is in question, for instance, eyewitness statements, videos, photographs of the accident damage, and input from professional accident reconstruction experts are used to show that the other driver was at fault for the wreck. Without such proof, you have almost no case at all.
Settlement Negotiations Get Under Way
You may not need to take your accident case to court to be paid for your damages. Most personal injury cases are not settled by a judge and jury but by two lawyers working things out and forming a settlement. To get things started, your attorney sends the at-fault driver's insurers a letter of demand. This letter lets the other side know what you are demanding to be paid. No one wants to take a case to trial – it's time-consuming and costs both sides more money. You may never see this letter, but you will be closely involved in forming a bottom-line settlement figure. This figure is what you will accept to drop the case, and your lawyer carefully calculates what you are owed for medical expenses, pain and suffering, lost wages, and other accident damages.
Trial Preparations Begin
If you cannot agree on a settlement amount, your next step is to file a lawsuit against the other side. You may not be witness to much of it, but you would be astounded at how much work is done as part of trial preparation. You could be involved in the deposition, however. This meeting sits the parties down at a conference table to answer questions about the wreck, your damages, and more. Even though it might not be obvious to you, everything that happens as part of discovery makes the trial run smoother and quicker.
Speak to your auto accident attorney to learn more.