What is the Definition of a Trial?
In many cases, personal injury claims are settled out of court within a few weeks or months after filing them. However, cases will go to trial if a dispute cannot be settled amicably. Personal injury cases in Georgia are tried in front of a jury. There are several states where this is not the case.
Understanding Civil Court Trials
Personal injury claims, such as those arising from automobile accidents or wrongful death lawsuits, are heard in civil court rather than criminal court. Trials in the criminal and civil courts share some commonalities but also have essential distinctions:
- Civil cases are about recovering losses. The goal of a criminal case is to find an accused person “guilty” and sentence them accordingly. This is not done in civil trials. Most personal injury lawsuits revolve around getting the victim of an accident the compensation they need to cover expenses like medical bills and property repairs.
- Many civil cases are settled out of court. The defendant, in your case, may throw in the towel at any point. They may think they’re doomed to lose in court and prefer to make you a deal. There will be no need to proceed with the trial if you accept the offer, which will be referred to as a “settlement.”
- Civil cases are easier to prove. Everybody knows that in court, the prosecution has to prove their case “beyond a reasonable doubt.” However, this only works in criminal cases. The burden of proof is much lower in a civil court. You have a good chance of winning if the evidence suggests the other person could have avoided causing your injuries.
Is a Trial Ever a Good Thing?
You can expect your personal injury attorney to do everything necessary to settle your case out of court. It’s not uncommon to get an out of court settlement from the insurance company after presenting a compelling case. Time and money are both spared as a result.
Two situations, however, call for a trial:
- If the insurance company is uncooperative and going to court is your best and only option.
- Your attorney may advise going to trial if the settlement offer from the insurer is inadequate.
Whether or not your case is appropriate for trial depends on the strength of your evidence and the attorney’s assessment of the jury’s disposition toward your case. If the jury is on your side, they may give you a larger sum of money.
Contact the Personal Injury Lawyers at The Brown Firm
If you have been injured in an accident, the experienced personal injury attorneys at The Brown Firm offer free consultations to accident victims in Georgia and South Carolina. Call 800-529-1441 to speak with our personal injury team today!
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