People who suffer injuries from an accident be it a medical malpractice or a car crash may file a personal injury lawsuit to recover compensation for their losses and suffering. When it comes to a personal injury case, it is important to be aware of who is going to hear your case: a judge or jury. But how do you know if you have the right to a jury trial or not? It depends on the case that you are presenting.

The Seventh Amendment to the United States Constitution currently states that in civil cases, wrongful death and personal injury cases included, the right to a jury trial is guaranteed. Most of the times, in cases where the plaintiff hopes to recover the expenses incurred due to the accident through the compensation amount, the right to a trial by jury is a constitutional one, which means that when a party solicits a jury trial, the disputed matters will be resolved by a jury.

Plaintiffs who are going to represent themselves in court, are probably better off opting to have their case heard in front of a judge and not a jury. If they elect to have their cases before a magistrate instead of a jury, they will not have to be anxious about making an opening statement before a jury, going through the series of actions necessary for jury selection, depositing jury fees with the court, or submitting jury instructions to the court.

The amount of the declared injuries is also important when it's decided who is going to hear the case. In various states, if the value of the damages is not high, the plaintiff doesn't have the right to a jury trial, and a judge will hear the case.

It is possible the defended will admit liability, but this rarely happens. Therefore, the case will go to court where the worth of the injuries has to be determined. If a jury trial is requested, a group of six or twelve people will hear the case and will listen to testimonies intended to determine what influence the injuries had on the plaintiff's life. Then, they will come to a verdict, considering the judge’s instructions regarding the law.
Personal injury cases usually involve a factual dispute, which is an aspect taken into consideration when deciding whether a case is eligible for a trial by jury or not. For example, in a lawsuit filed as a result of a car accident, the plaintiff will state that the other party involved was negligent and the defendant will try to prove this accusation false. This situation is an apparent factual dispute and, consequently, a jury will be deciding if the plaintiff can be awarded compensation or not.

Trials by jury are usually preferred because they allow injured individuals to present their cases and demand that defendants are found liable for the wrongful or negligent behaviors. They give plaintiffs a voice to express themselves thoroughly, which in some cases can be essential in reaching a favorable outcome.

Contact Sean M. Cleary, Miami Personal Injury Lawyer

The Law Offices of Sean M. Cleary's mission is to offer excellent legal aid and representation in personal injury cases. If you have suffered injuries and damages in a car crash or another unfortunate incident due to the negligence or unlawful conduct of others, Sean M. Cleary will guide you through all the aspects of a legal claim and will advance your rights in the courtroom.

Author's Bio: 

Sean M. Cleary is an attorney with over 13 years of experience in the personal injury field. He is the owner and President of The Law Offices of Sean M. Cleary and has established a reputation as a Miami experienced, highly skilled personal injury lawyer.