In many personal injury cases, the keys to success include calling the right witnesses, providing detailed testimony, and proving your claim with relevant evidence. Knowing what not to say and who should not testify are equally important, but rarely does the situation call for the sole injured party to remain silent. This unusual strategy paid off earlier this year when a Bridgeport jury awarded a car accident victim more than $150,000 in damages without the victim having to speak a single word in proving her case.
Interstate 95 Accident
The case in question involved a 53-year-old woman injured as a passenger in a car crash on Interstate 95 in Bridgeport. She filed claims against both the driver of the car in which she rode and the driver of the other car involved in the accident. The woman was able to reach a settlement agreement with the insurance company of the other driver. She and her attorneys attempted to do the same with the driver of the car she was in at the time of the accident, but the two sides could not reach a compromise, and the case proceeded to trial. Liability was adjudicated by default when the defendant failed to respond to interrogatories, so the amount of damages was the only matter brought before the jury.
History of Drug Problems
According to the plaintiff’s attorney, the decision to not have the her testify was based primarily on her questionable history, including battles with drug addiction and at least two felony convictions related to drugs. Her past, her attorneys believed, had no bearing on the facts of the case, but could be used to severely damage her credibility. Therefore, plaintiffs employed an unusual strategy: keeping the injured woman out of the courtroom, therefore, not able to called as a witness. She had not been subpoenaed so she could not be required to testify in the case. Based upon the evidence presented by her doctors and medical records, the jury returned a verdict in her favor in the amount of $156,000, court records indicate.
Importance of a Subpoena
A subpoena is a tool used by the court system to notify a party or potential witness that he or she may be required to provide information pertinent to a given case. Subpoenas are used in all areas of the law, and a failure to appear after a subpoena has been properly served can have very serious consequences. In this particular case, if the defense had subpoenaed the testimony of the injured woman, she would have been required to appear before the court and testify. However, she was not, leaving the door open for an uncommon approach, which proved to be ultimately successful.
If you have been injured in a car accident or any other accident caused by the actions or negligence of another, and you are concerned about how to proceed in seeking just compensation, contact an experienced Hartford personal injury attorney. At Woolf Law Firm, LLC, our skilled team realizes that most cases require an intimate knowledge of the law, with some requiring an added measure of creativity to reach a favorable resolution. Call [[phone1]] to schedule a consultation today and find out how we can help you pursue the damages you deserve.