What to Expect When Your Car Accident Case Goes to Trial

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If you or somebody you care about has been injured in a car accident caused by another driver, you should be able to receive compensation for your losses. However, securing compensation can be difficult, particularly when dealing with aggressive insurance carriers and at-fault parties. The vast majority of car accident claims in California are resolved through a settlement with insurance carriers. Still, in some cases, it may be necessary to file a personal injury lawsuit with the help of a Long Beach injury attorney against the other driver involved. Here, we want to discuss what an injury victim can expect when their car accident case goes to trial.

What a Car Accident Trial Looks Like

Even though most car accident cases do not go all the way to trial, it is important to understand that the trial process can seem overwhelming. That is why it is crucial to have a skilled car accident attorney by your side to help you through this process.

We want to point out that the process described here will not happen until after months of investigation, discovery, and negotiations have taken place. This only describes the actual trial.

  • Jury selection. A jury panel will be randomly selected to reduce any juror bias, and each potential jury member will be asked a variety of questions to determine whether or not they are fit to be a juror for that particular case.
  • Opening statements. After a jury is selected, a trial date will be set. The trial will begin with opening statements where each side will have a chance to present their argument as to why they believe their position is the correct one.
  • Plaintiff presents their case. The injury victim (plaintiff) and their attorney will then present their case to the jury. They will share any evidence that they have gathered that they believe proves the other driver should be held liable. This could also involve calling witnesses and experts to the stand.
  • Defendant presents their case. The alleged negligent party (defendant) and their attorney will then have the opportunity to present their version of events. They will also present evidence that backs up their statements. The defendant may also call witnesses and experts to make their case.
  • Closing arguments. Once both sides have presented their case, they will each have a chance to deliver closing arguments to the jury. This is essentially a recap and an attempt to urge the jury one last time.
  • Deliberation. A jury will then go to another location to discuss what they have heard and make a determination about what verdict they want to render. This can last a few hours or several days.
  • The verdict. After deliberations, a jury will return to the courtroom and communicate their decision to every party involved. If the plaintiff wins their case, they will then be entitled to the compensation determined by the jury.

Work with an Attorney for Your Case

If you or somebody you care about has been injured in an accident caused by the careless or negligent actions of somebody else, work with a skilled car accident attorney in Long Beach as soon as possible. These cases often become incredibly complex, particularly if they have to go to trial. An attorney can use their resources to conduct a complete investigation into the case and fully prepare their client for what happens in a personal injury trial.