Can a Philadelphia Personal Injury Lawyer Be Good Without Trial Experience?

Choosing Philadelphia Personal Injury Lawyer who has never brought a case to trial may seem like hiring a chef who has never cooked. Most people’s perceptions about lawyers are based on TV and on TV, lawyers are usually giving opening statements to a jury one commercial break after meeting a client for the first time and they have at least one trial every week. While TV does portray the parts that it shows pretty accurately, what it does not show is that the 40 minutes of action in a TV episode would be surrounded by weeks or months of other, less made for TV work.

In the real world, fewer than five to ten percent of cases will ever reach a jury trial. Trials take a lot of work to prepare for and they are very expensive. In addition, there are far more cases filed than the courts can ever try meaning that if the parties do want to go to trial, it will be months or years before the case is ever heard.

This is in part because of the work a Philadelphia Personal Injury Lawyer does between meeting the client and a possible trial. Once they have the initial facts down from their client, they will begin the case by filing the complaint. The complaint details why the client is suing the defendant and the legal grounds for doing so. The defendant will then have a chance to ask the court to dismiss the complaint because it does not constitute a legal basis for suing. If the case proceeds, the sides will engage in discovery, which is a mandatory exchange of information related to the case. Following that, they will submit a summary judgment motion to the court stating that even giving any factual dispute to the other side, they must win as a matter of law.

During all of this, as the sides learn more about the other side’s evidence and goals, they will engage in negotiations to try to reach a settlement. Further, nearly all the legal work will consist of filing written legal arguments, not courtroom presentations. With nearly all cases ending through negotiation or a court ruling prior to trial, trial skills actually make up just a tiny part of what makes a good personal injury attorney.

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