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What is the Legal Process like for a Carbon Monoxide Poisoning Lawsuit?   

After gathering all of the facts and medical records available, your attorney will develop a litigation strategy for your specific case. This strategy should always focus on winning at trial. You see, if the attorney does not start from day one with the belief that your case is going to trial they won’t be ready for trial in your case. This is not to say that settlement is not contemplated, but if settlement becomes the key focus, many nuances in the case that would be essential for winning your trial are missed. It is much easier to prepare for settlement if you have prepared to go to trial. In fact you chances for obtaining a favorable settlement are much stronger if you have prepared for trial, because the other side knows that you are not just using trial as a threat, you are fully ready to go to trial and have a jury decide the outcome. This is not something that many defendants, insurance company and defense attorneys like to think about.  

Prior to filing the actual lawsuit your attorney may attempt to settle the case with the Defendant or their insurance company. There are benefits to you in this scenario, as the costs and fees of your attorney are typically less than after the filing of a lawsuit. However, the majority of the time Defendants or their insurance companies do not want to settle your claim without a lawsuit being filed. Many times Defendants and their insurance companies believe that any attempt to settle a case prior to the filing of a lawsuit is a sign of weakness. Most of the time this is far from the truth and these Defendants and Insurance Companies regret not making an effort to resolve a case before a lawsuit is filed.  As Forrest Gump said “Stupid is, as Stupid does.”  

Once a lawsuit is filed, both sides will engage in a process known as discovery. This is basically a legal process in which both sides get to find out what the other is going to say and show at trial. The defendant will have access to your medical records, work history and income records. The defendant will be able to take you deposition under oath and you may be required to submit to a medical examination by a physician chosen by the Defendant.  

Don’t get the wrong idea, you and your attorney will be able to do discovery of your own as well. Your attorney will get records from the defendants and take deposition under oath of key people involved in the incident that resulted in your filing of a lawsuit.  This is where all the facts, good, bad and ugly come to light and both sides get to evaluate them. 

There are many reasons that a case settles during litigation. Many times one or both sides realize that it would be in their best interest to resolve the case between themselves than to risk a jury making a decision that will not be favorable to them. Many times if a case settles before trial the costs of the case are significantly lower than they would have been if the case gone to trial and verdict.  

It is important to remember that even the cases with the best facts; best clients sometimes don’t do well at trial. A jury trial is a gamble, that sometimes is worth taking and other times is not worth taking. This is where an attorney will help you analyze the defendant’s best offer and compare it to what you might net by going to trial.