It is typical in a car wreck or truck crash case for both sides to send each other interrogatories in the discovery process. This process is where both sides gain information and documents to help each side understand the facts and positions of each party in the case.
Interrogatories are commonly used. These are written questions that the other party must answer in writing under oath. They can range from the simple (“State your name, address, date of birth”) to the more complicated (“State everything you did as soon as you realized you were losing control of your truck on Interstate 20 in Birmingham”).
The idea of interrogatories is that it allows each party, in an inexpensive way, to question the other party. On purpose of questioning the other party is to find out facts – such as “Did you consume any alcoholic beverages in the 24 hours before the wreck”. Another purpose is to find out the position of the other party – such as “Do you contend that the actions of any other driver contributed to the wreck”.
When we can find out the answers to these types of questions in written interrogatories it may allow us to not have to take depositions of certain people or to shorten the depositions we do take.
It is very important that we answer interrogatories in a timely manner (30 days) and we provide full responses to the questions asked. These are questions under oath and they can be used against the answering party in the trial of the case and in pre-trial motions for summary judgment. Sometimes people answer these questions in a careless manner but we have seen poorly answered interrogatories greatly impact the way a trial proceeds. If they are answered in one way and then in deposition the party answers the same type of question in a different way, this can impact credibility. So, take these very seriously as they are important to your car wreck or truck wreck case.
Please let us know if you have any questions about interrogatories and we hope that as you are reading this you have a wonderful day….