A wrongful death trial in Colorado is a legal proceeding that takes place when the surviving family members of a deceased individual bring a lawsuit against the party or parties they believe are responsible for the wrongful death. These trials are conducted in the civil court system and are aimed at seeking compensation for the losses and suffering caused by the death. Here's an overview of what to expect during a wrongful death trial in Colorado:
Filing the Complaint:
- The process typically begins with the plaintiff (the party filing the lawsuit, often a surviving family member or the personal representative of the estate) filing a formal complaint outlining the allegations against the defendant (the party accused of causing the wrongful death). The complaint must specify the legal basis for the claim and the damages sought.
- Before the trial, there are various pre-trial proceedings, including the exchange of information and evidence between both parties. This process, known as discovery, involves depositions, requests for documents, and other fact-finding activities.
- If the case proceeds to trial, a jury is selected from a pool of potential jurors. The attorneys for both sides will question prospective jurors to ensure a fair and impartial jury is chosen.
- The trial begins with opening statements from both the plaintiff's attorney and the defendant's attorney. These statements provide an overview of the case and the evidence each side intends to present.
Presentation of Evidence:
- Each side presents its case by calling witnesses, presenting documents, and introducing other forms of evidence. This includes expert witnesses who can provide testimony on technical or complex issues related to the case.
- After witnesses testify for one side, the opposing party has the opportunity to cross-examine them to challenge their credibility and the validity of their testimony.
- Once all evidence has been presented, both parties make closing arguments summarizing their case and attempting to persuade the jury to reach a verdict in their favor.
- The jury then retires to deliberate and reach a verdict. In Colorado, a unanimous verdict is typically required for civil cases.
- Once the jury reaches a verdict, it is announced in court. If the defendant is found liable for the wrongful death, the jury will determine the amount of damages to be awarded.
- After the verdict, either party may file post-trial motions, such as motions for a new trial or appeals, if they believe there were errors in the trial process.
Execution of Judgment:
- If the plaintiff is awarded damages, the defendant may be required to pay the judgment amount. This can involve negotiations or enforcement actions, depending on the circumstances.
It's important to note that wrongful death trials can be emotionally challenging for all parties involved. Having experienced legal representation is crucial to navigate the legal process effectively and ensure that the interests of the surviving family members are protected. Consulting with a skilled wrongful death attorney in Colorado is advisable if you are considering pursuing a wrongful death claim and trial.
CONTACT A WRONGFUL DEATH ATTORNEY IN COLORADO TODAY
At Hagen Nares PLLC, we have successfully represented clients who have been killed at no-fault of their own. We understand the laws established by the State of Colorado as well as federal law and will make sure that each party who is liable is held accountable. You don't have to face this alone–call 720-772-8513 today to schedule Free Consultation.