This is the next post in my series on the handling of trucking accident cases in Laredo, Texas. My last article discussed the need for discovery in commercial truck wreck matters. It is important to understand that trials are not won with “surprise” evidence which is gained at the last minute. Instead, evidence must be methodically accumulated through the discovery process. Given the complex nature of these types of cases, failing to properly conduct discovery can hinder your chances at recovery. It is, therefore, crucial that you retain a personal injury attorney who is experienced in dealing with such issues. In this article I will discuss what a victim should expect at trial. If you or a loved one are in need of assistance then contact my office today to speak with a lawyer.
Trial will begin with the selection of a jury through a process known as voir dire. This involves the questioning of potential jurors by both the attorneys and the judge. If it is clear from this questioning that a potential juror cannot be impartial, then the judge can remove them from the pool. If an attorney is unsatisfied with the answer of a potential juror, then counsel may use one of a limited number of challenges to remove that individual from the jury pool. It is important to understand that a potential juror may not be removed for reasons involving gender, ethnicity, religion, or some other protected characteristic. Once jury selection is complete then the jury will be empaneled.
Each side will make an opening statement after the jury has been empaneled. Opening statements are not a time for argument. This is simply an opportunity for each side to explain the evidence, which they intend to present, to the jury. Counsel for each side will also state the relief which they will be requesting. The Plaintiff will present their witnesses and evidence after opening statements have been concluded. The defense will then present their witnesses and evidence. The Plaintiff will follow with “rebuttal” evidence. Rebuttal is not a time to raise new arguments. Instead, it is simply an opportunity for the Plaintiff to directly direct any claims which were made by the defense. After the conclusion of rebuttal, each side will make a closing argument. The jury will deliberate and issue their verdict in regards to liability and damages. This will conclude the case.
The foregoing process can be highly complicated. The Court’s rules of procedure and evidence will be enforced and failing to follow these rules can result in a victim not presenting portions of their case. This, in turn, can result in one not receiving compensation which they may deserve. By retaining a personal injury lawyer, who is experienced in handling such matters, you help to ensure that your rights remain protected. I am a Laredo trucking accident attorney who is able to assist with such matters. My office prides itself on providing the highest levels of service and we are ready to assist you. Contact us today to schedule an initial consultation.