The Stages Of A Personal Injury Lawsuit


While you may want to settle a case out of court, there are some cases where your personal injury lawyer might advise you to file a lawsuit. While this might seem overwhelming, a competent attorney can guide you through each stage of the process.

The Complaint

The first step in filing a lawsuit is to file a complaint. This officially begins the lawsuit. The complaint will include the identity of the party, the legal basis for the lawsuit, any legal claims you are making, and important facts related to your legal claim. 

At the end of the complaint is the "prayer for relief" that will explain what you would like the courts to do. In some cases, your prayer for relief is simply for the courts to award you damages in a specific amount.

The Summons

The defendant must be made aware that they are being sued through a process known as a "summons." The defendant is then referred to an attached complaint that is delivered to the defendant through the process of a "service of process."

The service of process can sometimes be tricky because it must be proven that the defendant received the summons. If you are not able to determine the residence of the defendant, you may need to take other measures such as putting an ad out in the paper.

The Response

The defendant then has a period of time to respond to the summons. The response is called the "answer" and addresses the complaint. The answer allows for the plaintiff to file a counterclaim. 


The discovery period is when both parties begin the process of obtaining evidence. This allows for both parties to make a stronger case. The methods used during the discovery include interrogatories, depositions, requests for admission, and physical examinations.


Your personal injury attorney might file a motion in order to get the courts to act. For example, your attorney might file a motion for a summary judgment. The defendant might file a motion to dismiss the case if it is without merit.

The good news is that many cases are settled right before the trial. The defendant would rather settle than continue the process of fighting the case in court. However, a personal injury attorney will inform you of your best legal options. Your attorney will explain the process of pre-trial negotiations and how you may be able to reach a settlement. 


25 March 2021

Working With A Lawyer

If you are injured in an accident, what is your first move? While getting medical care should be your first priority, the fact of the matter is that working with the right lawyer can be incredibly helpful in making it easier to prevent problems. For starters, your lawyer can talk with you about what to do in order to prevent problems with your paperwork, and he or she can chat with you about what to do when you start getting calls from other attorneys talking about the case. On this website, check out great tips and tricks you can use to prevent problems with your recovery from a financial perspective.