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What to Expect From Your Richmond Personal Injury Trial

You'll most likely find yourself in a Richmond personal injury trial when you haven't reached a settlement with your insurance company.  You don't want to find yourself in this situation, but you can't just back down from your personal injury case.  Trials can be difficult, but since you started the fight, you should see it through to the end.

First, scheduling the Richmond trial may not be easy.  The availability of the judges and the number of cases waiting to be heard in a particular jurisdiction are a couple of unpredictable factors.  It usually takes at least a year before a trial can take place.  Just remember, this gives you and your Richmond personal injury attorney time to properly prepare for the trial.

You may think that you know how it feels to be in a trial after seeing them on TV or in the movies.  They fail to capture what a trial entails.  They actually follow a somewhat standard format. 

Normally, trials commence with the judge calling the respective parties and the potential jurors.  The attorneys then proceed with "voir dire" - the questioning of the potential jurors - to determine whether they would have any bias that may result in an unjust trial. Those believed by your lawyer to be biased in any way would be removed from the panel of jurors.  

After deciding who gets to be on jury, the opening statements are presented.  These are basically the synopses of the arguments of both parties; they are narrated by the respective attorneys of the opposing sides.  An opening statement is generally a glimpse at the stories upheld by both sides as well as the outcome they wish to arrive to after the trial.  

The opening statements are followed by you being placed on the witness stand as your Richmond personal injury attorney presents your case.  You will be questioned by your attorney, as well as by the defense attorney.  You will be cross-examined by the opposing party's lawyer in order to find any traces of fault or inconsistencies in your responses.  That's why you have to be firm with your testimony. 

Other individuals who may be relevant to your Richmond personal injury case will also be given time on the witness stand.   The defense is then given the floor to present their side.  They may have their own set of witnesses that your own attorney can cross-examine in return. 

After both sides have been heard, the judge then instructs the jurors regarding the law and how it pertains to your Richmond personal injury case.  Following that, both sides are given an opportunity for closing remarks.  

Before you hear the verdict, your case must be deliberated by the jurors.  This is done in a closed room and it's hard to say how long this may take.  Once the judge calls all parties back to the courtroom, you will learn who won the case and how much money, if you won, will be awarded to you. 
Bob Battle
100% of my practice is devoted to serious traffic defense and criminal litigation in state and federal courts