Pretrial Discovery in Your Car Accident Injury Lawsuit


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Pretrial discovery in a car accident case can include depositions, medical examinations, disclosure of documents relating to the case and interrogatories, or requests for information from the other parties. This is an important part of the legal process because it prepares your case for potential trial. If your case goes to trial, this phase helps to make your case stronger by fleshing out details and finding supporting evidence for your claim.

Discovery in Your Accident Case

Discovery is the pretrial period during which lawyers from both sides of a case seek evidence and investigate facts. Interviewing witnesses and examining documents is usually part of this process. Information gathered during discovery must be shared by both sides of the case.

During the discovery process, your attorney may interview the drivers, witnesses and other parties who have information about your case in depositions. Lawyers from both sides will be present at depositions. Each side is allowed to ask questions and make objections. Similarly to a court proceeding, the witnesses swear to tell the truth. A stenographer records everything that is said in a deposition and later makes a transcript of the deposition which both sides can use as evidence at trial.

Document production also is sought during discovery. Medical bills, medical evaluations, statements of earnings, statements about other aspects of your case and other documents can be sought by each attorney during discovery. Information gathered can be used by either attorney during the trial process.

Having statements of witnesses in advance is handy because if a witness contradicts an earlier statement, the prior testimony can be used to establish inconsistencies in testimony. That is one of the reasons your attorney will be present at all depositions and review all of the documents in your case in advance of trial.

Attorneys often bombard each other with motions and interrogatories during the discovery process. This is a time consuming part of an attorney's job. This can help facilitate settlement if one or both parties do not want to go to trial.

Getting Legal Help

A personal injury lawyer who handles car accident cases will be skilled at the discovery process as it is part of the trial proceedings. Your attorney will file the appropriate motions to ask for discovery documents and conduct interviews of pertinent parties through the deposition process. You can trust your attorney to advise you of your rights and discuss any issues that come up in your case.

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