This is the final post in a series of articles in which we have discussed the litigation process following a car accident in Fort Worth, Texas. Many car accident cases are settled before a lawsuit is filed. Serious accidents, however, involving catastrophic injuries, commercial entities, or disputed liability, often require the plaintiff to initiate litigation to get the compensation they deserve. This prospect can be intimidating to many clients. We felt it was important to provide the information contained in this series to help car accident victims and their families understand what to expect should litigation become necessary. Another objective has been to assist victims in selecting a law firm with the experience, resources, and skills necessary to handle car accident litigation. If you or a loved one have been injured in an automobile crash, contact an attorney as soon as possible to protect your legal rights.
The subjects discussed in this series included:
- When litigation becomes necessary following a car accident
- Dealing with preliminary motions filed by the defense
- Conducting discovery in car accident litigation
- Pretrial motions in car accident cases
- Attending a car accident trial
Thanks to television and movies, most people think litigation is limited to a trial. It is important to understand that there are various other phases to litigation. First, when settlement negotiations with a defendant’s insurance company are unsuccessful or incomplete before the statute of limitations is set to expire, litigation must be initiated to preserve the victim’s rights. Second, once a lawsuit is filed, it is not uncommon for defense counsel to file one or more pretrial motions attempting to have the case dismissed. Your attorney should expect and be prepared to respond to any such motions. Third, another important process that occurs before the trial is discovery. The attorneys for both sides used discovery tools such as depositions, subpoenas, and interrogatories to gather evidence in support of their case. Fourth, in addition to the defense attorney’s pretrial motions, lawyers for both sides may file motions for a variety of reasons. Commonly, such motions request the exclusion of evidence that the other side wishes to use at the trial. The outcome of these motions can have a significant impact on a case. Last, after the conclusion of each of the pretrial phases mentioned above, the trial will begin. One should have an understanding of what to expect during the proceeding.
It is important to retain a law firm that is willing to represent you and your family from settlement negotiations through the conclusion of a trial. When selecting a firm, we recommend inquiring about a law firm’s financial resources and litigation experience. We also suggest that you retain a firm with attorneys who are Board Certified in Personal Injury Law and that employs its own investigator. These recommendations are important whether you are injured in Fort Worth, Dallas, or elsewhere in Texas.