A jury is a group of individuals who are selected to hear evidence and arguments presented by both the plaintiff and the defendant in a civil trial. The jury is responsible for making a decision on the case based on the evidence presented and the instructions provided by the judge. In a personal injury case, the jury may be asked to determine whether the defendant was negligent and whether that negligence was the cause of the plaintiff’s injuries. The jury’s decision can have a significant impact on the outcome of a personal injury lawsuit, as they may determine the amount of damages that the defendant should be required to pay to the plaintiff.
In Texas, juries can be used to resolve civil cases. In fact, parties in a civil case have the right to request a jury trial in Texas. The Texas Constitution guarantees the right to a trial by jury in civil cases, and this right is further codified in the Texas Rules of Civil Procedure. The size of the jury can vary depending on the type of case and the court in which it is being heard, but generally, juries in Texas civil cases consist of 6 or 12 jurors.
Jury Trials and Personal Injury Cases
Jury trials in personal injury cases can have both advantages and disadvantages. As a plaintiff, you and your attorney have the burden of proving that you suffered damages or injuries that were caused by someone else’s negligence. However, the jurors who will decide your case are not legal experts but instead, ordinary citizens. This means that, in addition to presenting strong evidence and arguments, the way you and your case are perceived in the courtroom can also significantly impact the outcome of the trial.
When it comes to personal injury cases, juries can be influenced by various factors. For example, prejudice may arise when a juror has a pre-existing bias that prevents them from taking your injury seriously. On the other hand, sympathy may arise when a juror is particularly favorable to your case due to liking you or feeling compassion for your injury.
Fortunately, there are ways to mitigate these influences. During voir dire, your lawyer can help identify and eliminate jurors who may have a prejudiced view. Additionally, a skilled lawyer can help prepare you to make the best impression on the jury, increasing your chances of success in your personal injury case.