If you are injured in an Ontario accident, your Ottawa personal injury lawyer may start a law suit on your behalf. One very important step in your case is your examination for discovery. The evidence you give, and how you give it, will have a serious impact on the insurance company’s settlement position. Here are some serious faux pas that can wreck your prospects of a successful settlement or trial outcome.
1. Lie. About Anything. And you case is lost. Period. The number one goal of most defence lawyers on discovery is to catch you in a lie. Defence lawyers know that jurors will not make an award to anyone who exagerates, denies past injuries or tries to conceal skeletons in the closet. If you are worried about something, talk to your lawyer about it in advance. There is rarely a wart on a case that cannot be managed if the proper planning is done.
2. Ramble. On and On. The best witnesses at discovery answer the question they are asked and then stop talking. Defence lawyers know that a skilled witness who is very responsive to the questions will do well with a jury.
3. Volunteer information without being asked. Only the defence lawyer gets to use your discovery. You do not get to use it. As a result, there is no point going on and on and answering questions you are not asked. It cannot help you. It can only hurt you.
4. Be rude and Get Mad. The transcript will show your attitude in many ways. Be polite.
5. Be Vague. Just to Get it Over with. Giving vague answers to describe the impact of your injuries on your work, leisure, family and housekeeping chores will ensure that your damages are undervalued.
Avoid these pitfalls to improve your opportunity for success in your personal injury case.