The Big Day: How to Handle Yourself in Court for Your Personal-Injury Case

If you have been wronged by another person's carelessness or negligence, you may find yourself facing a trial in court. While quite a few personal-injury claims are settled outside of court, you may need to take the next step and have your case heard before a judge and jury. Appearing in court can be very stressful and intimidating, but if you are well prepared, you can be relaxed and ready to plead your case (with the help of your attorney). Read on to learn about some key preparations you should make before your big day in court.

Don't expect your case to be over with in few days' time. You may have bemoaned the length of time it has taken to get your case finally heard in court, but you should know that you are likely in for even more waiting. Trials have an order that they progress in, generally, but the progress is often interrupted by hearings, continuances, postponements, and other issues. Some of these issues are due to the number of people who must be present to conduct the trial, so any absence could cause a delay. Some of the issues are actually caused by the participants, however. For example, in a personal-injury trial, there are numerous motions that must be heard, and many of these come at the beginning of the trial. Many of the motions are just customary. Some are important to one side or the other while others are really just delaying tactics to give one side more time.

Don't expect to have much of a private life during this process. Once you let the other side know that you may be filing a personal-injury case (such as with a demand letter or by filing suit), you are also putting into motion an investigation that will encompass your entire life. You will be investigated for your criminal, employment, work, educational, and personal relationship history. The perfect time for you to be honest with your personal-injury attorney is now. Not only must you be circumspect in your activities in the pre-trial period, but you must also give your attorney an opportunity to be ready for any accusations of questionable behavior on your part.

Don't get rattled on the stand. Your legal team will fill a valuable function when it comes to being prepared to be interrogated on the stand by holding some practice runs with possible questions, but you should do your part as well. Spend some time going over your medical records, photos of the accident and of injuries, the accident or police report, and more. Some months have likely elapsed since your accident, and refreshing your memory will aide you on the stand.

Speak to a firm such as Kidwell & Gallagher LTD for more tips on being ready for your "day" in court.