It can happen in an instant: one moment you are on your way to the store, and the next you have a wrecked car, an injury and are filing suit against the at-fault driver. When it comes time to face your day in court, you may be more at ease just knowing what to expect and how to conduct yourself. Read on for some tips on not just surviving the experience, but coming home with a nice fat monetary judgment.
Refresh your memory and get prepared: You will likely be asked for your testimony, so work closely with your legal team to prepare. Review your notes, documents, photos of the accident and your injuries and your medical records. This will refresh your memory about the day, keeping in mind that often the trial doesn't begin until months and months after the wreck.
Your attorney will also help you prepare by providing you with some potential questions that you will face. Knowing what to expect ahead of time will help you provide answers more confidently. In some instances, you may have some practice question and answer sessions to get you up to speed before the big day.
Have nothing to hide: When you go against a big insurance carrier, as you will be doing when you file suit, you should just be ready to have your personal life exposed. Even if you think you have nothing to hide, prepare your attorney to deal with any negative history you might have by being complete upfront and honest with them from day one. Consider your personal life, work history, criminal record, legal past and medical history fair game and let your attorney in on any issues ahead of time.
Along those same lines, you should just assume that you are under surveillance at all times when out in public. You may be recorded going to the doctor, at the grocery store and anywhere else. No matter how embarrassed you might feel about your limp or your other physical limitations due to the accident, you should rethink trying to hide those effects. You might be accused of exaggerating or even faking your physical condition.
Stay cool on the stand: You know your attorney and can likely zip through their questions easily, but you should be ready for some different tactics from the defendant side. You might find yourself suffering from any number of questionable behavior from the attorney for the other side, but you should just stay calm and handle it. For example, if the questions are coming at you in a rapid-fire manner, ask that the questions to be repeated at a pace that you can understand and respond to. If you accidentally say something you didn't mean, speak up and let the judge know so that the record can show a correction. Don't be intimidated; pause before answering questions to gather your thoughts and to allow time for your attorney to object to a question.
Contact an attorney, like Gary L Baker Attorney at Law , for more help.