How Long Will My Trial Last?

I was hurt in a car wreck and my case will be heard by a jury starting September 20.  How long will the trial last?

There are various factors that influence the length of the trial.  The complexity of the case is the biggest factor.  Cases with complicated liability issues or severe injuries tend to last longer.   Cases will few liability issues or relatively small damages take less time.

The judge’s working hours make a difference.   A typical schedule is 9:00 to 5:00, with an hour break for lunch and a morning or afternoon break.  This means that the trial itself will consume about 6.5 hours per day.  However, some judges schedule other matters during the day that limit the amount of time that the case is actually presented to the jury.

There are lots of other factors, such as the experience of the lawyers, the level of preparation of the lawyers, the number of expert witnesses, the ability of the judge to control his or her courtroom, and more.

All that being said, the typical car wreck trial in Nashville that involves only two people – one plaintiff and one defendant – is usually finished in two days.  Three days may be required if the one or more expert witnesses are required on a liability issue or if multiple doctors testify.   One big factor that is hard to predict is the length of time the jury deliberates about the case.

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