This is the next post in our series on issues unique to Fort Worth, Texas pedestrian accident cases. Our last article discussed the importance of discovery when a pedestrian has been hit by a car. It is vital that a victim’s personal injury lawyer use all available tools in order to gain proof of a defendant’s liability as these types of cases are often highly contested. In this article we will discuss another important topic – what one can expect from the trial process. If you or a loved one are in need of assistance then a lawyer as soon as possible.
We previously discussed what one can expect at trial for injuries stemming from a dog bite. The process will be similar in matters involving a pedestrian who was hit by a car. Trial will begin with the selection of a jury. The plaintiff will make their opening statement. The defendant will then make his or her opening statement. The plaintiff will present their evidence and witnesses, followed by the defendant. The plaintiff will then present “rebuttal” evidence. Rebuttal is not a time for the plaintiff to raise new arguments; it is only a time to address points which were raised by the defendant. Each side will then make a closing argument. The jury will deliberate and then issue its verdict. If the plaintiff is found to have been fifty percent liable, or less, for the accident then the jurors will award damages. If, however, the plaintiff is found to be fifty-one percent or more responsible for the accident then the Plaintiff will recover nothing. How the jury will rule, in any given instance, is always going to depend on the specific facts of the case.
One thing that makes pedestrian accident cases different, from many other personal injury matters, is the extent to which liability may be disputed at trial. It is common for defense counsel in such matters to claim that the victim was crossing against traffic and/or a “do not cross sign.” When such disputes arise, your attorney needs to be able to present the case in a way that is clear, concise, and tells your story to jurors in ways which they will understand. It is also important that your counsel be able to relay the extent to which the injuries have impacted your life. This is even more so the case in matters involving serious injuries (such as paralysis, brain injuries, spine damage, etc.).
When selecting a Fort Worth pedestrian accident lawyer, we suggest you hire a firm in which the attorneys are Board Certified in Personal Injury Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. We also suggest that you retain a firm which employs an on staff-investigator. Finally, cases involving serious injuries may require the firm you hire to advance large sums of money for expert witnesses and other costs. It is, therefore, important that you retain a firm with the resources available to handle such expenses.