Stages of a Personal Injury Lawsuit: Investigation

Apr 18, 2016 — by Gary Zucker
Tags: Personal Injury

Looking over a binder full of data with a magnifying glassThe lawyers at Gary A. Zucker & Associates are proud to help clients throughout Brooklyn with their legal needs. Our team of experienced personal injury lawyers will fight diligently for you ever step of the way, offering strong guidance and counsel.

We'd like to continue our exploration of the process of filing a personal injury lawsuit. Let's take a look at the next phase of the process once papers have been filed.

The Next Step When Paperwork Is Filed

Now that the paperwork is completed, the case can move on to its next phase. With attorneys assembled, discovery and investigation begins, allow the plaintiff and defendant sides to build their respective cases. Much of this takes place outside of the courtroom, though a judge can help resolve conflicts and help the process move smoothly.

Understanding the Discovery Process

In essence, the discovery process refers to the lawyers of the case gather evidence, compiling information pertinent to the case, and interviewing witnesses. All of this helps in the construction of their legal case, which they will then present to the court during a trial.

Information That Can Be Discovered

During discovery, the following kinds of information and evidence is sought out:

  • Relevant documents related to the case
  • Testimony from witnesses
  • Background information on the witnesses
  • The identity of other potential witnesses
  • Comments pertaining to the case at relevant times or locations
  • Information on business practices or maintenance

Limits on What Can Be Discovered

While attorneys can compile a good amount of information for their cases, certain information may be considered private or privileged and cannot be part of the case. Some examples of these include:

  • Confidential/privileged conversations or correspondence (e.g., between spouses, between patients and doctors, between lawyers and clients)
  • Private matters of a personal nature (e.g., sexual orientation, religious beliefs, health issues)
  • Information on third-parties not germane to the case (e.g., plaintiff or defendant co-workers, friends)

Depositions

Depositions are interviews/meetings that are conducted between attorneys and witnesses. Witnesses are questioned under oath, and their testimony may be recorded. This helps ensure honest answers and that the witness' story does not change during the trial. Any inconsistencies or contraindications in witness testimony can be brought up during the trial phase.

Requests for the Production of Evidence

This is, simply put, a formal request for any pertinent documents to be produced, such as contracts and bills. In addition, this can be used to allow attorneys to examine any physical evidence.

Requests for Admission

Requests for admission allow one party in a lawsuit to have information or evidence verified or authenticated by another party. These admissions are done under oath, and they may open up different avenues for discussion as the case is being built.

Interrogatories

Interrogatories are a type of correspondence that goes on between the parties in a lawsuit. These may be admissible in court.

Speak with the Legal Team at Gary A. Zucker & Associates

If you would like more information about filing personal injury lawsuits and what to expect during the process, it's important that you contact our personal injury attorneys today. The legal team here at Gary A. Zucker & Associates will fight diligently for you every step of the way.

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