The idea of having to go to court over your workers’ compensation claim can be incredibly stressful. But don’t worry. Your attorney will do their best to prepare you and help you through the situation. There are many reasons you might require a hearing. For example, your claim may have been partially or entirely denied. In either instance, here are some tips for what to do when making an appearance in court.
Listen to Your Lawyer
Just like your doctor or an accountant, your attorney has the professional experience to guide you, and following their advice will help you overcome legal matters successfully. They’ll have spent a lot of time getting to know you and studying your specific legal circumstances, so they’ll know all the strengths and weaknesses of your case. It is very important to listen to any instructions, advice, or guidance your lawyer givers you in preparation for your hearing.
Be Calm and Keep Your Cool
Many times, the opposing attorney is going to try to get you riled up to make you look unreasonable on the witness stand. Don’t let them get to you! This is not like arguing with a friend or family member. In our workers’ compensation system, the Deputy Commissioner (Judge) at your hearing will be making the first decision on your case. So the judge will be watching and listening to any argument you might have. You do not want him or her to have a bad impression of you or to be distracted from the facts of your case by flared tempers. Therefore, it’s always best to keep your cool.
Accept that You Can’t Control Everything
Unfortunately, a lot happens in the courtroom over which you’ll have zero control. For example, doctors often make or break a case based on their testimony. Your attorney will do their best to ask the right questions, but the fact of the matter is that sometimes the doctor won’t answer in your favor. This is true of all witnesses no matter which side calls on them to testify.
Because you never know how things will play out, it’s always best to listen to your attorney. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. They handle workers’ comp cases everyday, so they know what to expect and the best course of action to take.