If you are in a bad car accident, whether it’s your fault or not, you may be involved in a process called legal discovery. This process isn’t well known outside of legal circles though it’s an essential part of any lawsuit.
On TV shows, they may mention the term discovery, but more often than not, trials on TV and movies are not realistic. In real life, because of this legal process, there are rarely any surprises when it comes to evidence in the trial.
Keep read to learn the 5 things you should know about the legal term discovery.
1. The Point of Legal Discovery
First, you should know what the whole idea of discovery is. It’s the process in place for opposing sides in a lawsuit to exchange information so that everyone has the same facts for the case.
In a car accident, for example, the facts of which cars are involved, if anyone had alcohol in their system, what injuries all the parties sustained, and other facts of the case are the same regardless of which side is using them.
It is up to the lawyer to make a case given the facts at hand.
2. It Encourages A Settlement
Going over all the facts of a case can often encourage the opposing sides to come to an agreement, or settlement before the case even goes to trial. This saves tons of time and money for everyone involved.
The discovery process lets both lawyers have a good idea of the kind of case that is possible for their side, as well as the other side. Since both lawyers know this, they often work out a deal on their own.
3. You Will Testify Under Oath
Either through written testimonies or oral depositions, you will almost certainly be required to share your knowledge of events and facts under oath. Oral testimonies are typically in a conference room, but still under oath.
Written statements can be produced anywhere, but are also done under oath and are legally binding.
4. You May Be Surprised What’s Included
There are some limits about what can be a part of the discovery process, but generally speaking, if it has even slightly to do with the case, it’s fair game.
For a car accident, there might be questions about your state of mind, what you were doing, where you were going, if you were following a normal schedule, if you had been drinking, if you had an argument with your spouse, and almost anything else you can think of.
5. You Will Need To Rely On Your Lawyer
Your lawyer knows the process, and you will rely on his or her expertise during discovery, just as you will if the case goes to trial. You can find out more by doing research, but in the end, listen to your lawyer. They’re the experts.
Discovery Legal Services
If you’re involved in a car accident or any other lawsuit, make sure to get legal representation. The discovery phase of the case is extremely important since it can lead to a settlement.
If the case does go to trial, the legal discovery phase will determine the basis for all arguments on both sides.