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How a Personal Injury Lawsuit Will Affect You

Ideally, in a personal injury case, your Essex County personal injury lawyer will settle with the insurance company and you will not have to proceed to the litigation phase. If a settlement cannot be reached, however, a lawsuit must be initiated if you wish to collect damages. The process usually involves several steps, though what happens varies from case to case; your lawyer will be able to explain the specifics of your case to you.

Preparing a Summons and Complaint

The first step is for your Essex County personal injury lawyer to prepare a Summons and Complaint. This is how he or she will file a claim for you in court. This can be done without your involvement or help.

Service of the Summons and Complaint

Then, the Summons and Complaint are served to those responsible for your injuries. From this point on, the responsible party is to be referred to as the defendant, and you will be called the plaintiff.

The Defense’s Answer to the Complaint

The third step in the process is for the insurance company for the defendant to hire a lawyer to defend the lawsuit. This lawyer will file an Answer to the Complaint in response to your side’s Summons and Complaint. The document usually contains a denial of responsibility for the injuries and of the extent of your injuries. Additionally, it can try to involve other parties related to the incident that caused your injury.

Discovery Begins

Next, discovery is begun, a process by which both the plaintiff and the defendant will ask for information from each other. It can include:

  • Interrogatories, which are questions that require written responses;

  • Depositions, which are records of oral testimony given by you as well as other parties;

  • “Requests for production of documents,” where lawyers ask for medical documents, witness statements, and other documents pertinent to the case; and

  • “Requests for admissions,” or a process by which both sides agree as to which facts of the case are not in dispute between them

After discovery, actions directly related to the preparation for the trial may take place. Finally, if the case does not settle before the trial date, the trial will occur.

If you have been injured and wish to take legal action against those responsible, call an Essex County personal injury attorney at the Clark Law Firm at (877) 841-8855.

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