Jury trial vs bench trial. Is there a difference between a jury trial and a bench trial? For many people, there is a lot of confusion surrounding a jury trial vs. a bench trial. It has been my experience that some people are not familiar with some of the key differences between the two and the purpose of this educational article is to explain some of the key differences between the two if you are faced with having to decide which one fits best for your situation.
THE GENERAL INFO ALERT
Before I get further into this article I want to remind you that the information contained in this article is general in nature. To learn more about what is best specifically for you case, I suggest that you talk those questions over with your legal professional.
In addition, you should find out whether for your case you can choose between the two. In some cases, and situations, you may not be able to choose one over the other.
JURY TRIAL VS BENCH TRIAL (THE PLAYERS)
To better understand some of the key differences between a jury trial vs a bench trial, you need to understand the parties and their major roles. During a jury trial your case will be heard by usually members of your community. A judge will be present along with the attorneys for each side, if you are represented.
One of the key roles of the jury is to be the fact finder in the case. In other words, the jury will determine what happened to bring you into court. The jury will listen to witnesses and view the evidence presented. These are some of the main things a jury will handle.
The judge, on the other hand will handle the legal issues which may come up in the trial. So, let us say for example that the other side objects to your evidence because they are of the position that the testimony is hearsay. The judge in the case will make the legal determination as to whether to allow the testimony into evidence or to not admit the evidence.
With a bench trial, there is no jury present. This means that the judge will make the determinations of fact and deal with the legal issues present. The absence of the jury means that the judge will perform both roles.
JURY TRIAL VS BENCH TRIAL WHICH SHOULD YOU PICK?
As I mentioned earlier, if you have an attorney, you want to speak with them about the specifics of your case first before making a weighty decision like this. In general, some attorneys suggest that if your case is heavily fact driven you might want to have a jury decide the case. On the other hand, some attorneys suggest that if the case is heavy on issues of law, a judge might be the way to go.
With the above stated, I hope you can see that the issues presented will shed light as to which type of trial may work for you. Because of the fact specific nature of this issues I cannot stress enough why you should probably speak with an attorney before tackling this issue.
WERE YOU INJURED BY A DOCTOR IN MARYLAND?
To speak with me further about an injury which happened to you while you were in the care of a doctor while here in Maryland, this is what I invite you to do. Pick up the phone and give a call.
I can be reached at 301-850-4832. I answer Maryland medical malpractice questions like yours all the time and I would be glad to listen to your story.
Marcus B. Boston, Esq.
Boston Law Group, LLC
2 Wisconsin Circle
Chevy Chase, Maryland 20815