What Is Discovery in a Personal Injury Claim?

Going through the personal injury claims process can seem daunting. For most individuals, this is not something they do every day, so hearing the terminology associated with personal injuries may be confusing. One of the words you should be familiar with is “discovery.”

The discovery process is an important aspect of personal injury claims, as it allows all parties involved to examine the available evidence and the ability to take depositions from witnesses.

Typical Steps During the Discovery Process

The official discovery process covers several things that could occur during a personal injury claim. In general, we will see four separate steps, which include:

1) Interrogatories

Interrogatories are documents that contain questions that get sent to every party involved in the case. These documents should be filled out with the appropriate answers to the interrogatories within a specific amount of time (such as 15 or 30 days).

Interrogatory responses are considered to be given under oath and, thus, must be accurate and truthful. Interrogatories have a wide definition range and can include questions about witnesses or evidence, identifying information, as well as statements or opinions of what happened.

2) Request for admission

The request for admission step typically involves asking one party to admit or deny facts in one or more areas related to the case. A person who receives a request for admission will normally have to answer the request within 30 days, and any refusal to answer could be deemed as an admission. Usually, requests for admission involve simple aspects of the case that are not under dispute.

3) Request for production

During a personal injury case, attorneys need an abundance of solid evidence in order to create a successful claim. This includes making requests of opposing parties to provide clear and compelling evidence and documentation form. Some of the evidence that may be needed through request for production include, but are not limited to, the following:

Medical bills: This includes hospital bills and continued necessary medical expenses, such as follow-up visits, rehabilitation, medical devices, medications, and more.

Lost wage proof: If a person is unable to work due to their injury, proof can come from income statements, doctor’s excuses, tax returns, and more.

Property damage proof: If the injury claim involves property damage repair, including damage to a vehicle, there will need to be proof of the damage estimates.

Photographs or video surveillance: Any photo or video surveillance related to the incident will be requested.

4) Depositions

Depositions are in-person question-and-answer sessions between attorneys working on the case and individuals who are involved in the case. Depositions can be taken of witnesses, the plaintiff, the defendant, and any others who can provide relevant information that may be used in court.

Depositions can cover a significant amount of ground, depending on what the attorneys wish to ask, and they provide attorneys and the judge in the case with a clear understanding of the facts of the case and the parties involved.

Working With a Louisville Personal Injury Attorney

If you or somebody you care about is currently involved or could be involved in a personal injury claim, we encourage you to reach out to a Louisville injury lawyer as soon as possible. The discovery process can be challenging, but an attorney can help you through every aspect of your claim in an effort to help you recover compensation.