The Idaho Personal Injury Guide was created by Hepworth Holzer to help individuals and obtain maximum compensation for their claim.
How Personal Injury Cases Work
It begins with your injury that was caused by someone else’s negligence. You may have been at a store when you slipped in a spill that didn’t get cleaned up. You may have been given the wrong meds from your doctor. You may have been smashed into by a truck on the highway. Whoever caused your injuries is going to be the liable party that you will bring the claim against.
You will not be directly suing that liable party. Their insurance company is going to be financially responsible for your justice in the form of compensation. Some people, particularly in cases such as slip and fall or dog bit cases where they know or are friends with the liable party, won’t want to bring a claim because they think their friend is going to have to pay them out of pocket. That’s just not how it works. Their insurance is going to take care of that.
Please note that the insurance company wants to save themselves money, so they will try to lessen the value of your claim as much as possible. You need strong Boise personal injury lawyers to fight against insurance companies who don’t want to provide just results.
We strongly encourage you to reach out to our lawyers as soon as you possibly can. It’ll help build the strength of your case if you get started sooner rather than later. There’s a lot of things that are time sensitive about personal injury cases, such as evidence and witnesses’ memories of what they saw.
Tips for a Successful Personal Injury Case
When you are involved in an accident or incident that leaves you seriously harmed, it is important to prioritize your health over everything. We understand that life is busy and complicated and you likely have priorities that need to be taken care of, but seeking immediate medical attention is going to help you get better. It will also help your personal injury case get stronger and give you a better chance at success. Delaying seeking medical attention means that you are likely not going to see the results that you deserve.
Collecting evidence at the scene of the accident is going to be important to the success of your case, as well. If you are not physically capable of staying on the scene because you got on an ambulance and were rushed to an emergency room, you can call on a friend, family member, or even our Boise personal injury lawyers to come onto the scene and get the evidence needed to build a strong case. Either way, you need to make sure you can preserve photos, videos, and gather contact info from witnesses. Lawyers may be able to gather even more evidence, which is why it’s so important to talk to them as soon as possible.
Lastly, under no circumstances should you be giving the insurance company a recorded statement. They are trained to ask you questions that lead you to answer in an unfavorable way. That means that they can devalue your claim and you will not get the results that you deserve.
Types of Personal Injury Cases We Handle
Personal injury is a term that covers a lot of varieties of accidents and incidents. Our Boise personal injury lawyers cover a lot of different types of cases, including:
- Medical malpractice
- Car accidents
- Truck accidents
- Motorcycle accidents
- Bicycle accidents
- Aviation accidents
- Slip and falls
- Traumatic brain injuries
- Surgical mistakes
- Spinal injuries
- 4-Wheeler accidents
- Farming injuries
- Dram shop injuries
- Distracted driving accidents
- Construction accidents
- Catastrophic injuries
- Birth injuries
- Burn injuries
- Dog bites
If you feel you are eligible to bring a personal injury case, please don’t hesitate to reach out to our Boise personal injury lawyers. We can prove an initial free consultation to help you get the guidance you deserve.
Choosing a Personal Injury Attorney
You probably wouldn’t be looking at this if you didn’t have questions about how you should pick a personal injury attorney. Who should my personal injury attorney be? There’s a process that we would recommend that you go through in picking your Idaho personal injury attorney. That process requires investigation. Spend some time looking around.
Certainly, don’t just respond to TV advertising or billboard advertising. See if you really have a trial attorney that you’re looking for. Not every personal injury attorney is a trial attorney.
A trial attorney is somebody who is not scared of the courtroom, wants to go to the courtroom, and is perfectly happy to go to the courtroom. Why does that matter? Because the insurance companies know the difference. They know if a lawyer is willing to go to the courtroom, then that case is going to get full value in resolution, whether it’s after trial or in settlement. Many cases do settle. That’s important, but one of the ways you make cases settle is by going to trial on other cases.
What do you want to look for in that trial attorney? You want somebody with success in the courtroom. Do your research. Look at their resumes, look at what they’ve done. You want somebody who’s been recognized by many of the organizations that acknowledge attorneys. There’s a very traditional one called Martindale-Hubbell. What’s the lawyer’s rating there? AV is the highest.
There are other public rating systems: Best Lawyers Ratings, Avvo Ratings, many other standards. There is one organization, and we’re proud that we have a member of that organization in our firm, Charlie Hepworth, but there’s one organization of the Top 100 trial lawyers in the country. It’s called the Inner Circle of Advocates. You have to be a great lawyer to be in that.
Is the person a member of the American College of Trial Lawyers? Are they members of AAJ? Do they teach other lawyers how to do lawyering? All of these things are out there to be found. Spend your time on the Internet looking at these things when you’re identifying a personal injury lawyer for your claim in Idaho.
Find a lawyer who knows what they’re doing in the courtroom. Find a lawyer who actually spends their time in injury cases. You don’t want a general practice lawyer. You don’t want a business lawyer. You don’t want somebody who does wills and estates sometimes and does divorces sometimes. What you want is a personal injury trial lawyer with results.
If you want to talk more about it and what we’ve accomplished at our firm, just give us a call. Anyone of us will talk to you. We’ll tell you if you’re looking at good lawyers and we’ll tell you the people to stay away from, too. Pick the right trial lawyer because the trial lawyer you pick for your personal injury claim in Idaho can make a big difference in your life and in your future.
When to Settle a Personal Injury Case
How do you decide whether to settle a case in Idaho or not settle a case in Idaho? That is a very simple question that has a very complicated answer because there’s so much that goes into the consideration of what the value of a personal injury case is. There’s a lot that goes into the basic decision that needs to be made by the injured person as to whether they should or should not settle.
If you’re represented by me personally or anybody else in my law firm, then it’s our responsibility to be your voice in talking to the other side. It’s also our responsibility to gather all the information we can that is relevant to the value of your claim, like are there going to be future medical expenses? Is this injury going to be permanent? What’s that going to look like for the rest of the person’s life? We gather all that information and then sit down with you to provide you with all of the information necessary to make an informed and intelligent choice.
It is your choice. We have, of course, a lot of experience settling cases or otherwise taking them to trial when necessary.
The question of whether you’re getting a reasonable value in the settlement or not really boils down to what a jury would do if you went to Idaho jury trial. That’s the type of thing for which there is no magic answers. It’s hard to predict. Nobody knows the answer to that. The other side doesn’t know it; nobody does because you haven’t even met your jury yet.
What it requires, if you want to get the maximum value of what is a reasonable, and just, and fair amount of money to satisfy your claim, is having the best legal team on your side. The other side is aware of this. If you don’t want to settle it, that we’re perfectly willing and able to take it to a jury trial and the other side knows it because we actually have had a track record of successfully pursuing jury trials for decades and decades. That question will also involve a consideration of how risk-averse you want to be. It’s really your personal decision.
If you want to make that decision, then you need the best attorneys, trial attorneys, actual trial attorneys that you can find. Our firm has done this for many years successfully. If you have such a situation, please feel free to call us anytime at all or anybody else, any of the other lawyers in my law firm because we all have a similar level of experience all doing the same type of work, again, representing your best legal interests.
Personal Injury Settlement Timeline
It’s natural to wonder how long your case is going to take. Is it going to settle? What is going to resolve? When is the claim going to resolve?
I’m incurring these medical expenses. I need to get them paid. How long does it take? The answer is that terrible lawyer’s answer: it depends.
A personal injury claim in Idaho can resolve quickly or it can resolve after many years of litigation and fight. What are the things that impact that? Your personal injury case may be simple. Your injuries are small, the damages are limited, and a resolution can be worked out easily with an insurance company or a corporation that caused you damage.
Or it could be the fact they dispute the scope of your injuries. That makes it go a long time. More doctors are involved. They hire doctors. The litigation process is extended.
We also always want the injured person to have gotten as healthy as they can be. Maximum medical improvement is a term the doctors and the lawyers use in the process of injury claims.
The question you always have in an injury case centers on what the future holds for you. What’s going to happen with this injury later? I had a back injury. Is it going to bother me in 10 years, or 15 years, or 20 years? Sometimes it takes a while to evaluate that and get the medical professionals involved in evaluating that question for your personal injury case here in Idaho. That can make it take a long time.
The real answer for how long it takes for your case to settle is it depends. There are even those cases where you can’t get it resolved. You file a lawsuit. You can’t get it resolved during the 16, 18, 20 months prior to trial. You can’t get it resolved on the courthouse steps like they say.
The case goes to trial. The jury comes in and gives a verdict. What happens? The other side appeals. There are even times when it takes year after year after year. You go up on appeal. You have to try it again.
Those are the scary cases. They’re the outliers; they don’t happen often, but they can happen. Just like very few cases can settle very quickly, there’s very few cases that take a really long time and a whole realm of cases that cover in the middle. If you want to talk about your case, just call somebody at the firm. We’re happy to give you some advice, some direction, some guidance, and review your situation.
Choosing an Injury Lawyer Near You
If you look out in the world today, one of the things folks are doing is always looking for things close by. Do you need an attorney near you? You need an attorney in your state. You need an attorney who’s willing to travel to you, but what you want is a good attorney, not an attorney who happens to just be down the street.
If you have a claim of any sort in Idaho, whether it’s a products liability case, a medical malpractice case, a trucking accident case, a car crash case, or whether it’s in Eagle, Idaho, or Meridian, Idaho, or Pocatello, Idaho, or here in Boise, Idaho, you want an attorney who’s going to fight for you. You want an attorney who knows how to fight for you and how to take care of you and your family. Don’t just look for an attorney near you; look for an attorney who knows what they’re doing. If you want to talk to us about having us represent you in your claim or you have any questions about picking a personal injury attorney, just give us a call.
Injury Cases That Require a Lawsuit
In Idaho, does every claim arising out of an accident or the like require a lawsuit? The answer is, no. Many cases are settled without a lawsuit.
The idea of pursuing such a claim is you have to put the other insurance company on the other side in the situation of being able to reasonably evaluate the claim. It’s routine for insurance companies to be provided with an opportunity to try to settle the case before being presented with the lawsuit. It would serve you well to have a lawyer on your side if you would like to maximize the possibility of being able to settle the case absent a lawsuit. It would be to your benefit to have very experienced legal counsel doing that.
The insurance companies of the world, they know who the lawyers are out there who actually have experience pursuing claims to a jury and who have a track record of success. Having such counsel in your camp is going to increase the odds that you can actually settle the case short of filing a lawsuit at what would represent a reasonable valuation of your case given all the facts and circumstances. The likelihood of being able to get such a value without the lawsuit is clearly enhanced by having the best, most sophisticated legal team on your side. That is our law firm.
Our law firm has been doing this for well over half a century. Our lawyers in this law firm are all very experienced. The insurance companies of the world know all about it. If you happen to need to put a serious legal team on your side if you have such a claim, please feel free to call any of the lawyers in our law firm because we’re all pursuing the same type of claims and all doing the same type of work together for the common goal of representing your best legal interests.
What You Need to do in a Personal Injury Case
For the person who’s injured and has a personal injury claim, what they have to do in the lawsuit is not a lot, believe it or not. It basically means if you’re going to hire – if you don’t hire counsel, then you’re going to have a lot to do. It’s going to be overwhelming, particularly if you’re injured.
If you have an attorney, particularly an attorney with the sophistication and background and experience of pursuing such claims, then the lawyer will do most of the work for you. You’ll first have to interview with lawyers and select one. You get the right to select who you want to have representing you and your interests. Once you do that, it will be then up to them to do that which is necessary to put the case in a position of being evaluated and attempted to be settled. If that can’t be settled, or if it can’t, then to pursue the lawsuit.
At that point, the only things that the injured person would need to do is basically call and find out what the status is and just to follow it along. You’ll be occasionally called upon to answer some questions. You’re occasionally called upon to have meetings or the like where you are engaging in answering the other side’s discovery requests. That really just involves meeting with the lawyer or talking with the lawyer.
Then at some point, you may be required to give a deposition. If iThe other side has the right to take a deposition, which is testimony under oath in a conference room just like the one I’m sitting in now and ask you a series of questions about what happened in the accident, your background and the like. That would be something potentially you would have to do. If the thing ultimately has to go to a jury trial, well, then you’ll be required to sit in during the jury trial and be present at all times.
Really, the amount of effort that the injured person has to put into the pursuit of the claim is actually relatively limited. It’s the lawyer or team of lawyers that’s going to do most of the work associated with pursuing the claim and trying to maximize its value. At our firm, for example, we have a lot of legal horsepower here. We have a number of different lawyers. They’re all doing the same type of work to pursue the common goal of maximizing the value of the claim and getting you the amount deserved.
The insurance companies on the other side, they know that we have the legal sophistication and horsepower and the actual experience of going to jury trials if necessary. If you have such a claim, please feel free to call me personally at any time to talk about it further or talk to any of the other lawyers at our law firm. Again, we all do the same type of work and we’re all working closely together.
Different Ways to Settle a Personal Injury Case
What are the various ways one can settle a personal injury case in Idaho? One way you could do it, which you would not be advised to do, is to deal with the insurance company directly after the injury occurs and just try to negotiate directly with that insurance company. That, generally speaking, would be a very bad thing to do because you don’t have the information upon which to make an intelligent and informed decision as to what represents a good value of the case or not a good value. The insurance company knows and they’re trying to devalue your claim every step along the way, but that is a way of settling it. You can do that. You avoid paying lawyer fees and costs in order to do it. That’s the only benefit to that, but you’re otherwise in a situation where you’re very unlikely to command the actual value, a reasonable value of your case, particularly with all the knowledge that you need to put into that decision.
The other way, of course, is to have lawyers on your side. There are various mechanisms by which cases can settle. It’s very common, for example, these days after a lawsuit’s filed for the parties to mediate the case to go to a formal effort to try and settle the case where everybody gathers in the same place. There’s a mediator in between that goes back and forth between the sides making the effort to settle the case. That’s a formal effort at settling the case. Mediation is an extremely popular tool these days as a way of settling a case.
Another way, of course, if you’re represented by counsel on a claim, is to just negotiate like the old days with the lawyers. Every step along the way, for us to represent you, for example, you would be actively involved in the process and the decision making as to what would be a counteroffer to make at every step of the negotiating way. That, too, is a way of settling. Those are I think the three primary ways in which claims can get settled either before or after the lawsuit.
Our firm has more experience than most. We’ve been around for more than 60 years doing exclusively personal injury work. We have a legal team here that has some very high level of legal sophistication and horsepower with the actual experience of going to trial so that the other side knows that if they want to try to lowball you, then that you have on your behalf a person who’s very ready, willing, and able to go to a jury trial in order to get the amount that’s justly due.
If you have such a claim and you’re talking about the possibility of settling it, please feel free to call us. The first consultation is free. Call our law firm today. All of us are doing the same type of work and have pretty close to the same level of experience. Feel free to call us anytime.
Rules of a Personal Injury Case
It’s often surprising to people how complex the rules that apply to personal injury cases in Idaho can be. There’s lots of different statutory and case law that makes the practice of personal injury law in Idaho challenging. It’s fun, but it’s challenging. It can impact your case.
For example, we follow a rule called comparative negligence, or comparative responsibility, or comparative fault. This is an apportionment of responsibility for an injury amongst the injured person and the person who caused the injury. It can be amongst multiple people who caused the injury. You take 100% of a claim or an injury accident and say that’s how much total responsibility there is.
A jury is asked to apportion it between the person who caused the accident, the injured person, or maybe there’s multiple people who caused the accident. Maybe there’s a driver running a stop sign and a person sitting in the seat next to them grabbing the steering wheel. They both are responsible for that collision that caused you an injury. That’s one of the complexed rules.
We also have what’s called a cap on damages. Lobbyists went to our legislature and said, well, even though you don’t know all the facts of every case, we’re going to put a limit to the amount of actual losses you can recover. There are ways that a good trial attorney in Idaho can get away from that cap on damages by showing other levels of proof or behavior by the person who caused the injury that will eliminate that cap and allow you to get full, fair, and maximum compensation like you deserve for your injury claim. You didn’t ask for it. You’re not out looking for a personal injury attorney in Idaho because you wanted to. We’re not people that you meet when something good is happening.
Understanding these rules and all the other rules that apply is a very important thing. It’s why you want an experienced personal injury trial attorney in Boise, Idaho, to help you out, not somebody who’s just a lawyer, or who practices on a general practice firm, or whose focus is divorce cases, or wills cases, or business transactions. They’re good folks, but they don’t know their way around personal injury law. If you have any questions about your personal injury case, give us a ring. We’re happy to talk to anybody anywhere across Idaho about their injury claim.
Steps in Filing a Personal Injury Lawsuit
Filing a lawsuit can be a relatively simple process, but the reality is, a personal injury lawsuit shouldn’t be filed until the right steps have been taken ahead of time. People don’t have fun in a personal injury case. It’s not a positive thing for the injured person to go through. Going through the entire course of a personal injury lawsuit can be a trying time for people.
One of the things you want is a lawyer who will prepare your personal injury lawsuit in Idaho in a way that hopefully will help it resolve sooner. A lot of times, what you want is a lawyer who will prepare an opportunity to resolve the case without even filing your personal injury lawsuit. When that personal injury lawsuit is filed in Idaho, you want that lawyer to have the full scope of knowledge of what happened in the case, what’s the scope of your injuries, what’s the course of your medical care, what’s your outcome, what’s your resolve?
You want all those things in place before they do the simple process of preparing the paperwork and filing the claim, taking it to the courthouse, these days, filing it online, paying the fee for filing the lawsuit. Once you pay the fee to file the lawsuit, then you have it served. It’s called being served. Basically, you have the lawsuit handed to the person who caused the injury or caused the damage that led to your personal injury claim in Idaho.
Once you get that done, they’ll get a lawyer and the litigation process is underway. That’s what it takes to get a personal injury lawsuit filed. If you have a claim and you’re contemplating a personal injury lawsuit, what you should do is reach out to the firm, chat with one of the lawyers and see if it’s a claim that maybe can be resolved without that suit, or if you’re going to pursue that suit, get the right lawyer pursuing it for you.
What to Know Before Giving a Deposition
For somebody who’s got a claim and there’s a lawsuit arising out of the claim for personal injury, the other side potentially does have the right to take your deposition. That’s just basically testimony under oath in a room not at the courthouse. There’ll be a court reporter there taking down all that’s said in the question and answer session with the other side.
If you have a good legal team on your behalf, you will have a meeting in advance of that deposition to talk about the process, to talk about how it is you can give favorable testimony, and how to give a good deposition. There are some rules to walk you through. These will take some time. Then, of course, to anticipate the questions, and to discuss how you would give answers to the questions, and basically prepare you for that deposition. You need to be prepared; you can’t go into a deposition unprepared without having really given any thought or effort into preparing for it.
It’s the exact type of circumstance, having a need to do a deposition in a case, that requires you to have a good legal team on your behalf so that you can be prepared for that deposition. That deposition is being prepared by your adversary party. The insurance company is hiring sophisticated legal teams to work against your claim. That’s who’s taking your deposition. They’re gearing up for it, so you need to be ready. The only way to be ready is to have a good legal team on your side having prepared you for that deposition appropriately so that when you go in, you can go in with the confidence that you are ready to give favorable and truthful testimony that will help the value of your claim be enhanced.
Our firm has had numerous cases involving depositions over the years. I cannot count the amount of depositions I personally have either taken or been involved in. Every other lawyer in the firm would say the same thing, but it’s hundreds. We have the experience; we have the legal horsepower to represent your interests. If you have such a claim and you need help to prepare for that deposition, please feel free to call any of the lawyers at our law firm, who all have had lots and lots of experience getting ready for such depositions.
Responsibilities of a Plaintiff’s Lawyer
What does a plaintiff’s lawyer do over the course of a lawsuit in Idaho cases? Before the case is filed, there will of course be the meetings with the client at that point, a potential client, to discuss what happened and then gathering of the – once the lawyer is hired, to gather the appropriate records that need to be gathered like medical records and medical bills. Contact will have to be made with whomever is paying for the medical bills.
If it gets to the point where it’s unable to be settled out of lawsuit, then from there, the plaintiff’s lawyer is largely going to take control of the lawsuit or the litigation that ensues thereafter. The lawyers for the claimant would file a complaint. The document that initiates a lawsuit is called a complaint and demand for a jury trial. Then they have to provide the other side with service of that complaint, physically handing them a copy of the complaint. They have 30 days to file an answer.
From that point on, the lawyers are getting ready for trial. That phase of the case before the trial is known as the discovery phase of a case. The lawyer is primarily engaged in doing all the forms of discovery. That is the exchange of written information, written responses, and questions back and forth. The lawyer will talk to the client, of course, along the way to make sure the answers are accurate.
The lawyer will be pursuing the deposition testimony of the people on the defense side that are looking to defend the case. That means testimony; I’m taking their testimony under oath. Otherwise, spend time getting ready to present the case to an Idaho jury.
The only way to effectively maximize what the plaintiff deserves in the way of full and fair compensation is for the other side to understand that you will go to trial. If you cannot settle it in an amount that represents full and fair compensation, then the lawyer will in fact take you to trail. He’s not afraid to go into jury trials. There are lawyers out there that don’t do jury trials even though they represent people who are injured. The insurance companies know very well who is and who’s not, actually has the experience and track record of pursuing jury trials successfully.
There’s a lot that would go into the question of what a lawyer does to get ready for that trial, but it’s basically all that would be necessary to prepare the exhibits, the examinations, and the statements, and all that is necessary to properly present the case for trial. By the time you get to a couple of weeks before trial, it becomes almost a full-time occupation; you do nothing else but get ready for that trial and numerous meetings and the like. When trial happens, then it’s 16-hour days. The focus is intense and it’s singular on the trial.
That’s an overview of what lawyers do without getting bogged down into the specific detail what lawyers do. The short version of it is that what they should be doing is working hard and working hard for you to maximize, again, the value of your claim and to get you what you justly deserve. Our law firm, unlike almost all other law firms, has had more experience doing jury trials than virtually any other. I’ve said I personally done a lot of jury trials myself. If you have the need to have a case, a lawsuit, pursued successfully, you want the best legal talent you can find that have the best and most proficient legal team acting on your behalf. That law firm is ours.
We have been doing this for well over 60 years at this point, our firm has. I personally have been doing it for over 30 years. We have the track record of actually having trial lawyer experience in front of juries many times. If you have such a claim, please feel free to call me personally or any of the other lawyers in my law firm because we all have that experience. We’re all working together doing the same type of work and pursuing the common goal of representing your legal interests.
What Happens During a Personal Injury Case
What happens during the course of a personal injury trial in Idaho? Let’s break it down into what most people would consider as the various divisions of things that happen. When the trial starts, the very first thing is to pick the jury. That is a very involved process.
If you have a one-party plaintiff against a one-party defendant, you’ll probably have about 40 or 50 people in the courtroom. From them, the 12 that will decide your case will be selected. That process is called a voir dire. It’s a legal term that means, “to speak the truth.”. The voir dire process is done strictly by lawyers. It’s controlled by the judge.
Basically, it involves questions with the prospective jurors that let us understand where they’re coming from and whether or not they have propensities that are favorable to you or unfavorable to you. There’s a process of actually striking juries. You have four automatic strikes of juries. It ultimately whittles down to the 12 that are going to decide your case. Oftentimes, these juries, they add another jury or 2, 13 or 14, just in case somebody gets sick and has to leave or something. At the end, when the process is done, the judge picks out the excess so you’re left with only 12 to make the decision. That’s the first step of the process.
The second step of the process is what’s called the opening statement, each lawyer’s opportunity to talk to the jury directly, not in a conversation way but just to give them a statement as to what they anticipate in the way of evidence. It’s the opportunity to express the theme of what the case is to the jury. Opening statements usually last something like an hour or less, a half-hour maybe. The judge also controls how much time for that.
The next is the actual trial process. That is the calling of witnesses and presenting evidence. The plaintiff, the one who was injured who brought the suit in the first place, gets to go first. They call their witnesses to talk to the jury about the case and what is presented as being at issue.
That will often involve the plaintiff, as well the medical people who are treating them, as well as other people who know them and the like. It’s a matter of selecting all the witnesses favorable to the plaintiff and then presenting them to the jury. Then the defense gets the right to cross-examine them, those same witnesses as well. Once the plaintiff is done presenting the witnesses and evidence on their behalf, then the defense has the right to go and do the same thing. They present their witnesses and their evidence or exhibits to the jury as well.
Once all that’s done, the plaintiff has one other opportunity for rebuttal. Anything that is newly brought up by the defense, the plaintiff gets an opportunity to rebut, which is usually quite a bit shorter than the original case. The judge again will be limiting how much rebuttal testimony will be allowed.
There are three times when witnesses are called to present evidence: plaintiffs, the defendants, and then rebuttal. Once that’s done, the case is considered submitted. The judge has a jury instruction conference with the lawyers. That’s a process that you would probably find excruciatingly boring, but it’s a matter of what instructions the jury will be given on the law as to be applied against the facts, and how they should make their decision, and the ways they should go about making their decision fairly.
After the jury instruction conference, the next and probably a lot of people consider them the most important phase of the case, and that is the closing argument of the case. Each side, an opportunity to argue to the jury what the evidence actually presented to them should result in. What is a fair result of the case?
Once that’s done, the case is literally submitted to the jury. The jury goes back in the room and deliberates. They identify a floor person to control how the process goes. Everybody waits until they return.
In Idaho, for civil cases, for tort cases or injury cases, it’s required only that 9 of the 12 agree. It’s a three-quarter majority verdict in Idaho, so you don’t have to have all 12 unanimously agreeing as you do in a criminal case. In a civil case, you only have to have nine.
Then, of course, there are post-trial things that happen, but that takes some time. Otherwise, it’s possible to have it appealed. For the most part, once the jury’s in, that’s the end of it, usually.
The Importance of Discovery During a Personal Injury Case
What is the discovery in a personal injury lawsuit in Idaho? Discovery is basically a term that signifies what each lawyer is doing to prepare for the trial and to discover literally what the other side is doing and intends to present at trial. The discovery phase of a case begins after the complaint is filed, the answer is filed by the defense lawyer, and you’re basically in the middle of a lawsuit. From that point forward up until the trial is generally considered the discovery phase of a case. Again, it’s each side’s opportunity to discover what the other side is going to say at trial.
There are various forms of discovery. There are a lot of written requests back and forth: request to produce documents, request to give narrative information, how did the accident happen, for example, or something like that from your perspective. There, we’re working on the written discovery. The lawyer would work with you, the claimant, to make sure that we’re putting together the most accurate information about – responding to their written discovery that is.
Another form of discovery is depositions, which is sworn testimony under oath in a conference room, not at the courthouse, but with a court reporter taking down what is said from a claimant’s perspective. The defense lawyer takes the claimants deposition, just asking a series of questions that are being recorded and are under oath. If someone has to have a deposition, the lawyer should be working very closely with the claimant, with the plaintiff, with the injured person, to get ready for that deposition. The preparation for a deposition should be a very involved process so that the claimant goes into the deposition confident that they know what’s going to happen and they’re prepared basically.
There are a couple of other forms of discovery that can involve other people like other people having their depositions taken or other people or entities being subpoenaed to produce information that’s relevant to the case. Basically, it’s each side’s lawyer pursuing the discovery of everything the other side intends to present at trial is the short answer to that question. The plaintiff’s lawyers, people who represent injured victims, if they call themselves trial lawyers, they actually spend most of their time doing discovery. There are a lot of lawyers out there that only do discovery and actually don’t even go to jury trial. They don’t have the experience of going to jury trial.
That’s not our firm, however, because our firm does have a significant amount of experience of actually going to jury and making appeals to juries on your behalf. I personally have had many jury trials that I’ve handled and have a track record of success. My law firm has a lot of success in pursuing jury trials and actual experience.
If you have a need for a lawsuit, you need to have an experienced legal team on your behalf because discovery is just getting ready for the trial; the trial itself is a separate thing altogether. Either way, even during the discovery phase of a case, to properly prepare for that trial as you need to do, you need to have an experienced legal team like our law firm. If you have such a claim, please feel free to call us any time. Any of the other lawyers in our law firm has years and years’ worth of experience in actually engaging in lawsuits and trials.
Who Gets to be a Juror
The question of who gets to be a juror in a personal injury case is very random. There’s an Ada County Jury Commissioner that has the job of summoning all the jury panels for all of the trials taking place in the county courthouse. It’s then random from all of those people that are selected for jury service that week to be assigned particularly to courtrooms. It’s purely random.
In a personal injury case in Idaho, usually, if you’re talking about one party versus one party, the jury commissioner will arrange for something like 40 or 50 people to be submitted to this process of picking the jury, which will be whittled down to the 12 people that are actually assigned to the jury. There’s a process called Voir Dire in which the lawyers get the opportunity to talk directly to the jury in a question and answer type session for the lawyers to try to elicit from the jury panel enough information about them that they can make a fair determination as to whether the person is reasonably likely to be fair, or they might be biased against you, or biased for you. The obvious object of it in reality if you just take a step back for a moment is to get a fair and objective jury who’s able to put aside any prejudice and come up with a fair and just result.
Who is chosen as the actual juror? It’s random. It’s several steps along the way until they’re actually in the courtroom. Then it’s also random as to which are going to be the 20 or so from which the jury is actually selected. Then from there, it’s a matter of the jury – the lawyers deciding which jurors they do want or they don’t want.
At the moment, every party has the right to four what are called peremptory or automatic disqualification of juries. You just literally write on a piece of paper that you don’t want juror Number Seven. Then other side then writes, we don’t want juror Number 12. Like that, it gets whittled down that way. Otherwise, it’s generally a pretty random process.
Examination From The Insurance Company’s Doctor
If you’re pursuing a personal injury case in Idaho, people often ask why the claimant has to submit to an examination by a doctor chosen by the defendant. The reason that they have to do that, of course, is actually dictated by an Idaho Rule of Civil Procedure that allows the defense to be given an opportunity to have the claimant, the person injured, examined by a medical doctor of their own choice so they are put in a position where they can defend against your claim and not necessarily agree with everything you’re saying about what injuries you’re claiming to have and the like. The rule is there for the prospect of a defendant being given an opportunity to have a full and fair understanding of what the injuries actually are and so that they are in a position of presenting at trial whenever that is that they think is adverse to what the plaintiff’s doctors are testifying about or the claimants himself or herself are testifying about. That’s the reason for the rule.
I think you should understand that at its heart, when somebody makes a claim for a personal injury lawsuit, they are putting their medical condition at issue in that case. Anytime somebody is putting something at issue in a case, each side has the opportunity to explore that particular issue and offer their own perspective of that particular issue. In this case, we’re talking about a medical issue and why the defendants have a right to have an independent medical exam. That’s what the defense typically has the right to do, but there has to be some justification for it. There has to be some at least dispute over what the medical condition is.
If you’re in a situation where you’re concerned with being in a doctor’s office who is not of your own choosing, that’s when you need a big legal team on your side working for you so that you can be prepared for such a thing when it happens or can avoid such a thing if necessary. If you have a situation where you’re pursuing a claim and you’re concerned about that, you should be seeking legal advice from the best legal team you can find that actually has the experience of dealing with these so-called independent medical exams and otherwise pursuing the claim through jury trial. Our firm has all that experience. We’ve been around doing this stuff for more than 60 years. I myself have been doing it more than 30. I have a track record of success.
If you have such a situation, please feel free to call us anytime to discuss it further or any of the other lawyers in our law firm. We all do the same type of work and all have a similar level of experience. We have a lot of legal horsepower here, in other words. Please, if you’re in that situation, call us anytime.
Your Right to a Personal Injury Lawsuit
Why does an injured person have a right to a lawsuit in Idaho? The simple answer to that question would be that they have been injured through the fault of someone else and their lives have been disrupted because of somebody else’s negligence or fault. They will have been injured to the extent that they have incurred medical expenses, often having to lose wages.
They might be out of work for quite a while, so the accident that gave rise to the claim may have a very serious financial impact on the claimant. Then, of course, there’s the non-economic damages component in that their quality of life has been dramatically affected, oftentimes devastatingly so. It is the right of someone who has had that impact on their life caused by someone else at fault to seek damages, money damages for the value associated with the gravity of the harm caused by the at-fault motorist.
If you need to pursue such a claim, you need to have a legal team on your behalf that has the background and experience of actually pursuing such claims and a trial lawyer team that actually has real trial lawyers on it that have actually been in front of Idaho juries and managed to have a degree of success. Our firm has been around for 60 years and has done many trials.
If you have a need for a claim, the other side has the insurance for the very reason of covering your claim and address whatever your medical expenses are, your economic damages, your non-economic damages. That’s the reason for the insurance. You’re entitled to it.
If you have the need to pursue such a claim, please feel free to call me personally at any time at all or any of the other lawyers in our firm. We are all doing the same type of work and we’re all doing it together. We have the legal horsepower and sophistication to bring to the table to maximize the value of your claim as to what represents a fair, and reasonable, and just amount of damages.
Call Our Idaho Dog Bite Lawyers Today
Were you injured due to someone else’s negligence in Boise and have questions about choosing a personal injury attorney? Contact our experienced Boise Personal Injury Lawyers at Hepworth Holzer today for a free consultation and case evaluation.
We are committed to helping individuals and families throughout Idaho navigate the world of personal injury litigation as quickly and efficiently as possible. Let us get results for you and your family.
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