A lot of the cases I handle can be settled without filing a lawsuit. In these cases, I present the client’s medical bills, medical records, doctor’s reports, police report, photographs and any other relevant documents to the responsible party’s insurance carrier. From there, through the negotiation process and with the client’s full understanding and authority, the parties are able to reach a fair and reasonable settlement.
However, when the resolution is not so easy, lawsuits are usually filed. There are many reasons why a lawsuit gets filed. Among the most common are disputes of liability (or fault) and damages (or bodily injury). If the parties cannot agree who caused the accident, a jury will ultimately have to decide. Likewise, if the parties dispute what injuries are caused by the accident, or the value of those injuries for a particular individual, the matter typically will be litigated.
Once a lawsuit has been filed, the parties (the plaintiffs and defendants) are obligated under the Court Rules to provide discovery. Discovery includes written interrogatories, exchanging relevant documents, photos, medical and expert reports, taking depositions under oath and, for the plaintiff in a personal injury action, submitting to medical exams by the defense. After the discovery is complete, the matter will proceed to arbitration. From there, if the case is not able to be settled, the case will proceed to jury trial.