Discovery is the term used to describe the investigation process that occurs once a case is filed and answered. Compliance with discovery is mandatory for all parties. The idea behind discovery is that if both sides knew each other’s case before trial, the trial would be more fair and the parties would have a better idea as to whether their case could be settled.
Generally speaking, discovery is the process by which each side asks the other side for information. For example, we might ask for additional medical records, or hospital policies and procedures, or background on the defendant doctor. The other side might ask for the same types of information. For example, defendants will commonly ask for your past medical records (to try and show that you’ve always had the injury and thus they didn’t cause it). Other things the defense might ask for would include details about what happened, or personal documents such as calendars and diaries. As a plaintiff in a medical malpractice case you will have to answer most of the questions posed by a defendant. All discovery is given under oath and must be complete and truthful.
Many cases are won and lost on the quality of the discovery done by your lawyer. This is especially true in medical cases where many of the people being asked questions will be doctors, nurses and other intelligent and highly trained professionals who may try to confuse the lawyer with technical medical answers. Thus, lawyers doing medical work not only need skill and experience to know what to ask, but also need to know the significance of the answers they get.
Additional steps of filing a medical malpractice lawsuit.
To speak with an experienced medical malpractice lawyer and receive high quality legal advice, contact the Law Office of Cirignani Heller & Harman, LLP.