You got into a bike accident in Plymouth and you filed a bike accident lawsuit against the driver at fault. However, you lost the case and now, you have no idea what will happen next. As with most legal issues, we can’t give you a one-size fits all answer. Every case is different but we can give you a general idea of what to expect.
Will You Owe Anyone Money?
The good news is that you won’t owe your lawyer any money. Most bike accident lawyers in Plymouth work on a contingency fee basis so you won’t owe them anything if you lose your case. You should, however, read your fee agreement carefully because some lawyers might still require you to pay their costs.
The bad news is that the driver you are suing is entitled to an award of taxable costs against you. This can include big ticket expenses their lawyer incurred such as expert witness fees, depositions, etc. These costs can easily add up if your case has been litigated for a very long time.
The defendant will use any means possible to recover their money from you if the judge enters a judgment against you for their costs. The defendant will most likely seek a judgment for the costs even if they are aware that you cannot pay them. In most cases, costs and attorney fees are used as leverage to get you not to appeal.
Can You Get a New Trial if You Lose?
Your bike accident lawyer can file a motion for a new trial before filing an appeal but don’t expect the judge to grant the motion. Your lawyer might request for a new trial just to preserve your appeal rights. Keep in mind that your lawyer won’t ask for a new trial because they are unhappy with the outcomes of the first one. They have to show that there were obvious and pretty severe errors in order for a new trial to be granted.
Can You Appeal if You Lose Your Bike Accident Lawsuit?
You need specific ground to appeal your case. The possibilities are too many to list here but to summarize, the court must have committed reversible error in order for you to appeal. Reversible errors are errors which affected the outcome of your case. For instance, if evidence or key testimony misled the jury into finding the defendant not liable for your injuries, then you might be entitled to an appeal.
There’s also what’s known as a harmless error. These errors do not affect the outcome of your case. For instance, if the judge excluded information about the amount of your damages and the jury ruled that the defendant was not liable for your injuries, exclusion of that information does not affect the outcome of your case.
While an appeal might be the next big step after losing your bike accident lawsuit, appealing parties are always at a disadvantage. The appellate court can decide to uphold the judge’s decision on any grounds. The reasoning behind this is that you were not harmed in any way if the judge reached the right decision but for the wrong reasons.
Your lawyer can only raise arguments they raised in the trial court. They simply can’t introduce a new argument in the appellate court. The reasoning behind this is that the appellate court cannot assign a new error to a trial court if the trial court wasn’t given a chance to correct or avoid it.
Unless your lawyer feels strongly about your chances of winning your case at an appeal court, you shouldn’t get your hopes up about an appeal.
Losing Your Bike Accident Lawsuit Does Not Mean Your Lawyer Did a Lousy Job.
Kevin P Landry Law offices has been operational for more than twenty years and from experience, we have seen that things don’t always go as we want them to. Jurors sometimes latch on to very strange things at times so don’t automatically assume that you lost your case because your lawyer did a lousy job.
We will do everything in our power to ensure that you get the justice that you deserve. Call us today at 508-746-2700 or visit our Plymouth offices today for a free initial consultation.