Case Timeline - What to Expect
Case Timeline – Foley & Small
At Foley & Small we are often asked by clients and potential clients what will happen as we handle your case. The typical steps are discussed below.
The first thing we do is have a client meeting where we get acquainted with you, learn the facts of your case, provide information about the law and answer your questions. We also have you sign the necessary paperwork to get moving on your file.
After the client meeting, Foley & Small will do further work obtaining information on your case which would include obtaining medical records, loss of pay information, interview witnesses, obtaining scene, vehicle and other photographs and completing anything else we need to do to learn more about your file. If necessary, we will often retain expert witnesses to help us better understand and represent your case. This could be accident reconstructionists, engineers, financial specialists, medical experts and others.
SETTLEMENT LETTER & NEGOTIATIONS
After you have completed your treatment it is typically at that time that Foley & Small will prepare a settlement letter to discuss the facts of how the incident occurred, identify your injuries and losses and discuss your treatment, recovery, and summarize your medical expenses and loss of pay information. We will also include in there an initial settlement offer. It is at this time that we typically will talk to you about a value for your claim and we will make that settlement offer based on the analysis that we will do together. After that there will be negotiations and we will be in contact with you and the other side exchanging offers and counter offers in an effort to see if your case might be settled.
If we are not able to settle your case the next step is to file the lawsuit. Foley & Small will prepare a complaint and file it with the Court and after that work with you on going through in preparing the case for trial.
Once the complaint has been filed and answered the next phase is the discovery phase where the parties will submit to each other written questions called interrogatories. Foley & Small will work together with you on answering those to make sure that they are as accurate and complete as we can get them. We will exchange further information in the form of documents and of course we will be getting the same information from the other side. It is at this time that the parties will also take depositions. Those are times where the attorneys can sit down and ask questions of the other parties and of witnesses in front of a court report to learn more about the case and its facts. Before your deposition is taken, we will sit down with you and prepare you for the deposition so you will know exactly what needs to be done to do a good deposition. We will also file papers with the court seeking a status conference and at that time we will get a scheduling order about the things that need to be completed in advance of trial. We will also typically obtain a trial date at this time.
In most cases, some time before trial, the parties will go to a mediation session. The court will typically order the parties to do this. That is where the parties select a mediator who is another lawyer trained to act as a mediator and we will go to that lawyer’s office and spend part or all of a day just talking about your case and seeing if it can be settled. You will be there with one of our attorneys here at Foley & Small and the other side will be there with their attorney and a representative of the insurance company or the company that is being sued and everyone will work to see if the case might be settled.
If settlement cannot be accomplished, the next, and last, step is the trial itself. Foley & Small will take steps to complete the final preparation for trial that would include taking video-taped depositions of doctors and lining up witnesses and preparing the exhibits to be presented at trial. Of course, we will be working with you for the trial preparation and your trial testimony. Trial itself will typically last two to five days with most trials we handle being jury trials. Most of our clients are fearful about going to trial but once they go through it a great majority of our clients find the trial process interesting, reaffirming about our judicial system and perhaps, most importantly, a rewarding process because we have obtained a favorable verdict.
Well, that’s it. Those are the things we do in a case. We will be with you the entire way and work hard to get the best result possible on your claim. We hope you have found this information helpful. If you have other questions or if we can be of service to you in your case, please contact Foley & Small.
You can also call us at 800-276-2525.
Foley & Small
1002 E. Jefferson Blvd.
South Bend, IN 46617