The Florida court system can feel quite daunting for somebody who hasn’t gone through the process before. It’s important to have a basic understanding of how the Florida court system works if it becomes necessary to file a lawsuit in your personal injury claim. Only about 5% of personal injury cases go to trial, but you should know what happens in the event that it does. Read on to learn more about the basics of what happens when your personal injury claim goes to court.
Where Exactly Does Your Personal Injury Case Go?
Where your personal injury case goes will depend on how much your case is worth. If your medical bills exceed $30,000.00, then you’ll go straight to the circuit courts and skip the county courts. Personal Injury law is state dependent. The circuit court you file the lawsuit in is typically the county where the accident happened. After your case is in circuit court, it is assigned a docket number proving that the case has been filed and is in the system. Your attorney will have served a complaint on the defendant detailing your injuries and demanding compensation to get to this point. If the other side refuses to settle or reach an agreement out of court, you need to then proceed with litigation.
Steps To Know:
- Discovery: After litigation begins, the parties ask each other questions and request documentation to try and get more details about the accident. This is done through written interrogatories, requests for admission, and requests for production. At times, filing evidentiary motions in court become necessary. This is where you ask the judge to rule on particular evidentiary issues.
- Depositions: Depositions are a long-form questioning period taken under oath and transcribed by a court reporter. Either party may take a deposition of a relevant witness or person with particularized knowledge about the incident. Typically the claimant is deposed.
- Alternative dispute resolution: If a settlement can’t be reached, then a mediation is the next step in the litigation process before a case is taken to trial. This is where the parties make an attempt to reach settlement using a neutral third party to facilitate the negotiations.
Going To Trial In Florida Circuit Court
If all the above doesn’t work, you will go on to trial in a Florida circuit court. You will probably be asked to testify on your own behalf, and evidence will be presented in the courtroom. You will also be questioned by the defendant’s attorney, and both sides will present witnesses to give their versions of what transpired. After both sides offer closing arguments, the judge will need to explain the relevant personal injury law to the jury in order to render a verdict. Then your case is in the hands of the jurors.
Contact Us Today
If you are filing a personal injury lawsuit, it is important to have an experienced personal injury lawyer on your side. Remember that insurance companies for people or businesses are always looking out for their own bottom line and will attempt to pay out the smallest amount they can get away with, and they have lawyers on retainer just for this purpose. Call Terry M. Rosenblum & associates in Hollywood FL to consult with an experienced personal injury attorney today.