Most people are intimidated by the thought of going to court, but few personal injury claims ever go into court for a full hearing. If your case proceeds to court, your solicitor will do their best to ease your concerns. They will guide you through the experience to its conclusion.
Make sure you dress neatly for your court appearance. is For District and Circuit Court hearings, cases are usually heard the day they are listed. In the High Court, however, you may need to return the next day, if your case is not assigned to a judge on the first day it is listed. Delays often occur, so your case may not start immediately. These delays can facilitate discussion of possible settlements of cases.
When your case does start, you will be called to give evidence first. Your barrister will take you through the facts of your case. The defendant’s barrister may then question you, based on the evidence that you have given. This is known as cross-examination.
Other witnesses give evidence after you finish giving evidence. Once all witnesses called to support your case have spoken, the defendants may call their own witnesses.
After all evidence is heard, the judge may give a decision on the case, or he may adjourn the case to consider the matter further and deliver judgement later.
Who’s Who in Court?
Your solicitor will accompany you throughout the court process. In the District Courts and Circuit Courts, a barrister will represent you as part of your team. If your case is in the High Court you may have two barristers (senior and junior counsel).
A pre-trial consultation usually takes place with your full legal team on the day of the hearing. The barrister may play “devil’s advocate,” preparing you for your appearance by cross-examining you in the way that the defendant’s barrister might do during the hearing. Expert witnesses such as engineers and doctors may be present at these meetings.