The discovery process usually involves sharing your confidential information with the other side.

Why You Will Have to Share Your Personal Information in a LawsuitIf you have never been involved in a lawsuit, you are probably not familiar with the different rules that govern it or even how it all works.  One of the things that may be surprising to you is that if you sue someone for causing injury to you, you will likely have to turn over information that you may want to keep secret.

After a lawsuit is filed, the parties go into what is known as the discovery phase.  This is exactly what it sounds like: each side gets to discover information about the claim from the other party.  It can occur in many forms, including written discovery (interrogatories, requests for production, and requests for admission), oral discovery (depositions) or even medical examinations.  The end goal is the same: both the plaintiff and the defendant are trying to gather evidence to help their case.  For a defendant and/or his insurance company, that usually means trying to prove that you aren’t as hurt as you claim to be, or that you had a pre-existing condition that is the real cause of your pain.

These issues can come up in a number of ways.  The other side’s lawyer might write a request for production asking for all of your medical records relating not just to this accident, but going back years.  Your lawyer can object to how much they’re asking for, or if they request irrelevant records, but you will ultimately have to turn over at least some of your medical records.  This makes sense: if you are suing someone and asking them to pay for your medical treatment for an injury, it is only fair that they be able to discover the extent of that injury and whether or not something else could be happening.

But even though it is logical that the other side can gain access to your confidential information, it still may not feel so great when you are the injured party.  Why should the driver that hurt you know about your history of mental health treatment, for example, or that you had specific medical concerns?  You can talk this over with your personal injury attorney, who will assure you that the information that you release to the opposing side can only be used for a limited purpose — the lawsuit.

While it may be tempting, you shouldn’t let the fear of having to share your personal information discourage you from filing a personal injury lawsuit if you have been hurt due to the negligence of another person.  If you have been injured, you should be able to recover for those losses including medical treatment, property damage, pain and suffering, lost wages and more.  Talk to your lawyer and work together to figure out a strategy to protect information that you may not want to disclose.  If possible, your personal injury attorney may be able to come up with a strategy to object to turning over that information.  You may still be required to give it to the other side — but it is worth consulting with your lawyer about it if you have concerns.

If you have been hurt in any type of accident, contact the Law Offices of Larry H. Parker at 800-333-0000 or  Our lawyers will fight for your right to get compensation for your injuries.  Initial consultations are always free, and we never charge a fee unless we recover money for you!

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