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The Process of an Auto Accident Lawsuit

If you’re thinking about a car accident lawsuit, it’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with the process. Your lawyer will walk you through each step, and if you have questions, you’re always welcome to ask. But it’s nice to know what you’re getting into before you dive in with both feet.

Once you’ve received medical attention and consulted with an attorney who has decided to take on your auto accident lawsuit, you’ll go through a five-stage process. While every case is unique, most auto accident lawsuits follow the same timeline and overarching process.

The injury attorneys at Phoenix Accident and Injury Law Firm near you have significant experience in helping clients who need help filing an auto accident lawsuit.  Our offices are conveniently located in nearby ChandlerPeoria, and North Phoenix, and we can meet in-person at our nearby offices, over the phone, or video call.  You can contact us for a free consultation, or read on to find out more.

By the way, we will also help with other problems that have cost you sleep, like getting a rental car very soon and finding a nearby doctor who can help you. Even the best legal team isn’t good enough if your quality of life isn’t sustainable while justice and compensation are on the way. The whole point of legal action is to regain quality of life, so we help you long-term as attorneys and short-term as your go-to people. Our familiarity with the local Phoenix courts makes us confident that we can help you get the best settlement possible.

The Process for an Auto Accident Lawsuit:

Complaint and Summons

Your attorney will prepare documents that explain what happened, who’s involved, and who you believe is responsible. This document will also include your request for damages. Once they’re prepared, they must be filed with the court.

A filing fee will be assessed by the clerk, but if you have retained us on a contingency basis, we take care of the filing fees on your behalf.

The summons is a formal action by the court, informing the defendant that you have brought action against him. An answer from the defendant is required.

Click here for more information about filing a complaint on your own behalf.

The Defendant’s Answer

The defendant—the person you’re taking to court—will have a chance to admit or deny responsibility to the accusations in the complaint by filing an answer with the court.

It is also likely the defendant will retain an attorney, and his attorney would be filing the answer document with the court in response to your complaint.


In an Auto Accident Lawsuit, after the complaint and answer are filed, both sides engage in the process of gathering information known as discovery.

As part of discovery in the Auto Accident Lawsuit, depositions may be conducted. You and the defendant will be required to provide supporting documents and written responses to questions while under oath. If the questions are answered verbally, a court reporter will record the session after swearing in the defendant or plaintiff to tell the truth.

In the Auto Accident Lawsuit, your lawyer will likely obtain photographs of the accident scene, interview witnesses and experts, and compile a comprehensive file that includes a detailed timeline of the events concerning your case.

During the discovery phase, your lawyer or the defendant’s lawyer can file any of several motions to change the dynamics of the case. The other party can ask the judge to dismiss your case, or either side may ask the judge to force the other into an action.

Settlement or Mediation Conference

Many cases—roughly 85% of them—are settled out of court.

In an Auto Accident Lawsuit, the judge can schedule a settlement conference. Another option is for you and the defendant to mutually decide on engaging a mediator to facilitate discussions regarding the incident and the appropriate amount of damages to be awarded in the Auto Accident Lawsuit.

See more about negotiating a settlement.


Not all auto accident cases go to trial, but if yours does, you’ll be put on the court’s calendar.

You may need to prepare for the likelihood that you will be called to testify in court. You can learn how to prepare to testify and what to expect here.

Your jury will hear the case and make a final determination based on the evidence that you and the defendant provide.

Keep in mind that pushing a case to trial is riskier than getting a decent settlement. We cannot predict how the case will turn out in trial, and it’s possible you may receive less in damages than you would have otherwise gotten in a settlement.

Auto Accident Lawsuit: You Do Not Have to Do This Alone

While you can file a complaint and summons on your own, please understand you don’t have to do this all by yourself. Your attorney will be with you every step of the way, providing guidance and answering all of your questions. Because we get paid on contingency, filing and court fees will be taken care of along the way, and we don’t get paid until you get paid.

At Phoenix Accident and Injury Law Firm near you, we have more than 15 years of experience helping clients obtain compensation for their personal injuries from auto accident lawsuits in the Phoenix area. When you’re ready to talk, please contact our office to arrange a free initial consultation by phone or at our Chandler office, conveniently located near you.

If you have been in an auto accident, contact Phoenix Accident and Injury Law Firm in nearby Chandler, AZ to speak with an experienced personal injury attorney. We provide personal injury legal services to clients in your area including ChandlerGilbertMesaScottsdale, Tempe, and Peoria.

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(480) 680-8125

Brenden Lewis
a month ago

So I suffered a tragic motorcycle accident leaving me injured and quite unhappy…… also the bike was totaled. This all star law team secured a large settlement for all my suffering. This process was very well advised by an aggressive and determined lawyer. All I can say is now I’m left a very happy man. Thank you karissa for working quick to bring my tragic story to a much warmer end. Just call them! You won’t regret it!

Shayianna Guyton
a month ago

They literally conversed with me every step of the way throughout my journey. Thank you guys

I was very pleased with my experience. They kept me informed the whole way through the process and checked on me through my treatment. Definitely would recommend

My dad was in a car accident and during those difficult moments, Phoenix Accident and Injury Law firm has been there for us. They care for their clients, will walk you through everything you need to know step by step, they follow up, very easy to reach and fast to respond. And one thing is for sure! they will fight for you! we felt safe with them! Me and the entire family thank them all so much for all their help! These people that works here are amazing!

Jenifer henke
a year ago

I was in an accident that resulted in getting whiplash and a concussion. I contacted Phoenix Accident and Injury Law Firm that day. Everyone was helpful (Rhea, Karissa, and Jeff) from the very beginning to the very end. They sent me to a physical therapy location that was pretty far away but the doctor and physical therapist were very kind so I did make the trek. They handled all aspects of my case in a timely manner and answered all my questions. They got the max amount possible, and from that, paid the medical bills and took their fair cut. I would not hesitate to recommend them to family or friends.

I would give ten stars if I could. This law firm is about as professional and friendly as it gets!! They stayed in constant contact with me and answered every question I had. I got a settlement that was higher than I expected and will definitely use this law firm again. I highly recommend hiring them to handle your legal issues!!

Fernando Lopez
a year ago

My experience with this team was superb, as they were ongoing with the case and making sure that the client gets what they deserve. I recommend anyone looking for a accident law group that this is the team you want to be representing you!!

Kimberly Legaspi
2 years ago

What can I say about the Thompson Law Firm? They are AMAZING!! It’s never fun when you need an accident lawyer because you are pretty much in a bad place. Shane and the staff have been wonderful, kept me informed at every step of this process. I would recommend Thompson Law Firm to anyone, in fact, I have referred several friends already!! Thank you Thompson Law Firm for everything you did for me!!!

Amanda Olney
2 years ago

These guys were absolutely amazing. They were very clear with me about what I needed to do on my end and I saw fast results. I just recommended them to a friend a week ago and he also dealt with my mother's case. I wouldn't see anyone else.

2 years ago

Karissa and Shane were amazing! They were there for any questions I had and checked up on me regularly. Highly recommend these guys!!

Karissa Murphy
2 years ago

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