A Personal Injury Lawyer Surprise AZ Trusts
The law firm of Alex & Saavedra, P.C. has helped many clients who needed a personal injury lawyer Surprise AZ residents respect. Though it is usually preferable to reach a settlement to avoid a lengthy and expensive trial, this is not always possible.
You may want to consider the help of a Surprise AZ personal injury lawyer if the insurance company refuses to offer a reasonable settlement for your damages. If a fair settlement can’t be negotiated, then it may be necessary to take the insurance company to court to recover damages from the negligent party. Though every case is different, here is some general information that may be helpful.
The Trial Process
When you hire a personal injury lawyer Surprise AZ victims respect, they can help guide you through the trial process. Most hearings have six phases which are:
- Jury selection.
- Opening statements from the plaintiff’s and defendant’s attorneys
- Testimony from witnesses with questions from the opposing attorney
- Closing arguments
- The judge’s instructions to the jury
- Jury deliberation in advance of announcing the verdict
Most personal injury trials require a jury. The judge and attorneys for both sides question members of the jury pool to make their selection of jury members. A top personal injury lawyer Surprise AZ has to offer may dismiss potential jury members for any number of reasons. The defense attorney has this option as well.
The plaintiff’s and defendant’s lawyers provide summaries of what they intend to prove in court. Usually the plaintiff’s attorney speaks first and provides more detail than the defendant’s attorney. Sometimes the defendant’s attorney will not make an opening statement until after the plaintiff’s attorney has presented their entire case. Before the trial starts, a skilled personal injury lawyer Surprise AZ trusts will likely review their statement and other trial details with you.
Testimony from Witnesses and Questioning
In personal injury trials, when each side presents their evidence to the jury, this is known as the “case-in-chief.” The plaintiff’s attorney may call on witnesses during this phase. Any physical evidence will also be introduced.
- Physicians and other experts may testify on your behalf regarding the extent of your injuries and how they occurred.
- Physical evidence may include photos of the accident scene and of your injuries as they appeared immediately after the accident.
- Each side has the opportunity to question the other side’s witnesses during their testimony.
- After the plaintiff’s attorney presents their case, the defendant’s attorney can present their own evidence and witnesses. The defense attorney will do everything possible to convince the jury that their client is innocent.
- After both sides have presented their cases, they declare a “rest” to signify they will not present any further evidence or witnesses.
During this phase both sides have the opportunity to summarize their individual cases. Each attorney may also point out the weaknesses in the other side’s presentation of evidence and testimony.
The Judge’s Instructions to the Jury
The judge will explain to the jury what legal standards must be met in order to find the defendant guilty and accountable for the plaintiff’s personal injuries. The judge may also explain the different types of damages that the defendant may be responsible for paying. Damages may include compensatory as well as punitive.
During the deliberation phase, the jury leaves the courtroom to discuss the the case in private. As a group they determine if the defendant is guilty and liable for the plaintiff’s injuries. This process can last hours or as long as a month, depending on the complexity of the case.
- Depending on the state, juries in a personal injury case may have to come to a unanimous decision. In other states, a majority rule is acceptable. Your personal injury lawyer in Surprise AZ can clarify this for you based on Arizona’s laws.
- If the jury cannot reach the required consensus for determining guilt or innocence, the judge will usually ask them to keep trying. If they continue to deliberate but cannot reach a verdict, the judge may declare a mistrial.
- If the judge declares a mistrial, the plaintiff’s attorney may choose to try the case all over again, or the case may be dropped completely.
- If the jury reaches a verdict, the jury’s foreperson privately tells the judge in writing. The judge then announces the jury’s findings to the court.
The attorneys of Alex & Saavedra, P.C. have helped thousands of personal injury victims. In addition to negotiating settlements for the highest dollar possible, they fight for their victims in court when necessary. Contact us without delay if you would like to discuss your case with a personal injury lawyer Surprise AZ victims rely on to fight for their rights.