What To Expect When Going To Court In Pennsylvania

Your Day in Court

Going to court can be a scary experience. You’re under the spotlight constantly. Lawyers for the other side try to make you change your story, confuse you, or make it appear like you’re not sure what happened. It’s a procedure designed to make you sweat and be anxious. Yet learning about how courts work can give you an advantage. At Katz Injury Law, we want to make sure that you receive the justice that you deserve. By learning about court proceedings, you can be better prepared for your day in court. Here are some things you can expect.

1. The Goal

First, it’s important to understand what the goal is for a court hearing in an injury case. Unlike in criminal cases, the Commonwealth must prove to a judge and jury that there is evidence beyond a reasonable doubt that the crime happened and was performed by the defendant. Civil cases are a little different.

In a civil case, the goal is merely to convince the judge, jury, or Arbitration Panel that the evidence you bring to the table is more persuasive (more likely than not) than the opposing evidence. You need to prove that an accident occurred and you likely suffered the injuries that your doctors have documented.

Knowing this can help you prepare for your day in court.

2. The Overall Process

There are many steps that need to be taken before you even arrive in court. They begin with developing a dispute. In the case of injury law, the dispute may be between yourself and a company or yourself and another individual. After you determine that the dispute cannot be resolved through an agreement, you have to file a Civil Complaint, outlining the facts and injuries. This complaint must be formally served on the other party.

The defendant must then file an answer to the complaint.

At some point, both parties must share evidence, because evidence not shared cannot be used in Court. In the case of someone being injured, the evidence collected may be hospital reports, doctor notes, and video footage of the accident occurring. It will include employment records and even many years of prior medical records.  The defense will include your own social medial posts if they tend to discredit your story and injuries.  You will be required to give a Deposition, which is a recorded sworn statement. The transcript of your Deposition will be used at trial.

Often, before a trial begins, the judge will informally hear both sides of the dispute through the attorneys, to determine if a settlement can be arranged. When settlements are unreachable, the case moves forward to a trial and a verdict.

3. Judge or Jury

You typically have a choice between presenting your case to a judge only or a judge and a jury. A jury is made up of peers who know nothing about the case or the people involved. The judge is also a third-party who knows nothing about those involved and can pass judgment objectively.

Get The Attorney You Need

When you need your rights to be protected, call our office. We have the best injury lawyer serving Philadelphia and the surrounding counties. Contact us today.

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