Victims of car accidents are usually eager to get their lives back to normal again. That can include healing from injuries and seeking financial compensation for the way the accident has negatively influenced their lives. If your case is not settled within a reasonable time, you may have to file a lawsuit, and part of the pretrial process is something called interrogatories. To help you understand this part of the discovery process, read on.
Discovery in General
Interrogatories are just one part of several legal practices known together as discovery. The point of discovery is to allow both sides in a court case to reveal and share information as part of trial preparation. Other discovery practices to know about are:
- Medical examinations – Often, accident victims must prove that they've sustained the injuries they are claiming.
- Depositions – This meeting involves the plaintiffs, defendants, and witnesses giving recorded testimony that can be used later in court.
- Document production – Medical records, photographs, receipts, and more are requested.
- Admissions – Alleged facts about the case are admitted to, denied, objected to, or pending.
The discovery process can take anywhere from a few weeks to more than a month if the case is complex. Court cannot begin until it's complete though.
This part of discovery is more than just questions to be answered and returned. Like all discovery practices, a lot can be learned from the nature of the questions asked by the other side. For example, if you must answer a slew of questions about your speed, your driving record, etc, then the defendants could be attempting to pass on some of the fault for the accident to you. Some of the questions are boilerplate and included on almost all interrogatories, though. These can include:
- Asking about distractions like texting or dealing with children right before the accident occurred.
- Asking about past accidents and the injuries, as well as past medical conditions.
- Asking about future medical treatments you might need.
The Best Thing About Discovery
This part of your case can seem like a routine annoyance before the main show, the trial, begins, but it can be more. It is always possible to be offered a settlement after evidence comes to light during interrogatories or other discovery activities. To learn more about discovery actions and your part in this process, speak to your personal injury lawyer to learn more today. You can use resources like chicagoaccidentattorney.net to find an attorney, if needed.