Facing a civil lawsuit can be daunting, especially when it comes to the examination for discovery. If you are a plaintiff involved in a personal injury lawsuit in Ontario, these tips can help you understand the purpose of the examination for discovery and how to prepare for it.
What is the examination for discovery?
The examination for discovery is an important step in a civil lawsuit. It is an opportunity for both parties involved in the case to ask questions and gather information from each other. As a plaintiff, this means you will be questioned by the defendant’s lawyer under oath. The purpose of this examination is to help both sides understand the facts of the case, clarify any issues and discover any evidence that may be relevant. It is crucial to be prepared and present your case effectively during the examination.
It is a great opportunity to show that you are credible, honest and likeable. If the other side can see that you will make a good witness, it will help your case.
How should I prepare for my examination for discovery?
Here are some practical steps you can take:
- Consult with your lawyer: Your lawyer is your trusted ally throughout the legal process. He or she should schedule a meeting with you to discuss the examination.
- Review your case: Take some time to go over the details of your case. Refresh your memory about the incident, gather any relevant documents or evidence and write down any important points you want to mention during the examination. Your lawyer will review the relevant documents with you. This might include information related to the accident such as police reports and medical records.
- Practice Q&A sessions: Ask a family member or friend to help you practice answering questions. This will help you become more comfortable and confident during the examination. Your lawyer may schedule a second preparation meeting to ask questions like the ones you will be asked at the examination.
- Be honest and clear: During the examination, be honest and provide clear answers. If you do not understand a question, ask for clarification. If you do not remember something, it is okay to say so. You should not speculate or guess if you do not know an answer.
- Understand that the examination will be transcribed: At the end of the examination for discovery, a court reporter will transcribe all the questions and answers given on the record. For this reason, you should make sure that you wait for the question to be asked before you start to answer.
What is my lawyer’s role?
Your lawyer plays a vital role in the examination for discovery. It’s their job to:
- Prepare you: Your lawyer will guide you through the process, help you understand what to expect and prepare you for the types of questions that may arise.
- Protect your interests: Your lawyer is there to protect your rights and interests throughout the examination. They will object to any improper questions and ensure the examination remains fair and respectful.
- Present legal arguments: If necessary, your lawyer may make legal arguments during the examination to protect your interests and address any objections raised by the defendant’s lawyer. Keep in mind the examination for discovery is a fact-finding exercise, not an opportunity to argue the merits of your case.
Preparing for an examination for discovery in a civil lawsuit may seem overwhelming, but with the right information and guidance, you can navigate this process successfully. Remember to consult with your lawyer, review your case, practice answering questions and be honest during the examination. Your lawyer will be there to support you, protect your interests and ensure a fair process. Stay focused, stay calm and trust in your preparation.
Victoria Edwards practices with the Siskinds Personal Injury department. If you have any questions about the information contained within this article or any other personal injury questions, please write to [email protected] or call her direct line 519-660-7848.