What Is A Pre-Trial Conference?

What is a pre-trial conference?

Whether your personal injury case has been filed in district court or superior court, your case will likely have a pretrial conference.  This usually occurs after or just before the close of discovery.  Your attorney attends this court appearance on your behalf.

Your attorney and the attorney for the insurance company prior to the pre-trial conference will collaborate on and finalize a pre-trial memorandum.  This document will have the caption of the case, and will detail the facts of the accident, the claims being advanced, the defenses, the injuries sustained, a tally of medical bills, list of witnesses, etc.

At the pre-trial conference the pre-trial memorandum will be given to the judge.  The judge will then ask the lawyers if there are any outstanding discovery issues.  The judge may ask if the case is expected to settle.  Finally the judge will give the lawyers a date for a final pre-trial conference, as well as a trial date.

Often at this stage of the litigation is when the parties really look at the case deeply and try to determine what a jury will likely do with the case.  That is why many cases settle around the time of the pre-trial conference.

Please note that all personal injury cases, including car accident cases and other injury claims, must have a pre-trial conference, but pre-trial conferences are not held with workers’ compensation cases.