Avoiding Legal Trouble

Motions To Dismiss And Your Personal Injury Trial

When you get injured in a car accident, you are owed money damages. Taking legal action can mean a trial and courtroom events like a personal injury trial can seem intimidating to many victims. One of the most alarming courtroom actions are motions to dismiss. Read on and be prepared for what could happen when this motion is submitted to the judge.

Trials Can Be Lengthy

If you have an opportunity to settle your case outside of court, it might be in your best interest to do so. As long as the other side offers you enough to satisfy your money damages, accepting a settlement means a quick and profitable end to the entire accident and insurance financial ordeal. When a case must go to court, it can be more expensive and time-consuming. Trials do not begin and proceed in a smooth manner. You might have continuances, postponements, motions, hearings, and other delays. Some of these delays are meant to stop a case before it really gets started, such as a motion to dismiss.

Motion to Dismiss

A motion is just a request by one side or the other of the judge. They ask the judge to rule on an issue. A motion to dismiss asks the judge to make the dispositive motion of dismissing the case. The petition, which contains the reasons for the request, can either be denied or approved.

Common Issues Addressed with a Motion to Dismiss

There are many different reasons for motions to dismiss, but many personal injury cases will have the following types of motions to dismiss come up time and time again.

Jurisdiction – There are two types of jurisdiction issues. Personal jurisdiction refers to cases where the plaintiff (you) brought (filed a lawsuit) the case in the wrong place. You should know that you must file a lawsuit in the same state where the accident occurred – even if you live in another state. Subject matter jurisdiction refers to bringing cases in an inappropriate court. You must file a personal injury suit in civil court, not in probate or family law court. Jurisdiction cases are dismissed with instructions to file the case using the correct jurisdiction.

Lack of Claim – This motion, if approved, can have devastating consequences. While you might imagine that this issue should be litigated in court, lack of claim can rest on arguments and a judges ruling. This motion acknowledges that the victim has been harmed, but not by the defendant. For example, if their client was driving a car with defective brakes they will argue that if not for the defective brakes the accident would not have occurred. In other words, your suit should be against the car or brake manufacturer and not the other driver.

Ask a personal injury attorney, like Franklin L. Jones, Jr., about these motions and other aspects of your trial.