Summary Judgment- What Is It? What Does It Mean?

So you have met with your lawyer about your case, signed pleadings, signed medical authorizations, called him/her a million times, attended a deposition and agreed to a demand. You understood that your lawyer has placed your case on the trial calendar. All of a sudden, your lawyer calls you and tells you that the “defense has filed a motion for summary judgment.”

What does that mean?
Summary Judgment means that the defense counsel believes that based on the evidence produced during the investigation of the details of your case, that there are no facts that are in dispute. In this situation, one of the parties is entitled to a judgement.
So what happens next? Your lawyer will get an expert affidavit/affirmation stating that indeed there is a fact (or facts) that are in dispute and that the actual judgement in the case should be decided by a jury. In a medical malpractice case the fact that might be in dispute is whether or not the defendant doctor committed malpractice. In an automobile case it may be your treating physician stating that your injuries meet the serious injury threshold required for automobile cases. In a premises liability case, it may be a meteorologist who will state that it was not snowing at the time you slipped and fell or an engineer who will state that the defendant that you are suing created a dangerous condition that caused your injuries.
Your attorney may wish to have you sign an affidavit attesting to the fact that you were not able to work for a certian period of time or that you were not told something by the defendant doctor.
Finally, your attorney will oppose the motion. Hopefully, the defendant’s motion will be defeated and you will get your day in court.
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About the Author

Jason B. Kessler Attorney At Law is a full service law firm where attorneys with their extensive experience provide strong & Aggressive defense against Personal Injury cases.