If you are ever injured in an auto collision, the first step you need to take is caring for your health.
If you sustain damages that warrant a trip to the hospital, then call emergency response as quickly as possible. If not, you can move on to gathering evidence at the scene of the collision and hiring an accident attorney.
Once you do, you can discuss the possibility of pursuing a personal injury lawsuit. The most critical factor in winning that potential suit is the quality of the evidence you gather. Evidence frequently makes or breaks cases involving car and motorcycle accidents, so collecting it is worth understanding and prioritizing.
Below, we explain 7 types of evidence that you may use in your car accident case.
Pictures at the Scene
After you establish that your health is stable, you should call the police and report your incident. What they will do is send an officer out to the scene of your accident as quickly as they can. The time it takes for them to arrive is perfect for taking pictures, which are often a crucial piece of evidence in car and motorcycle accidents.
First, take photos of your injuries, if they are visible. The opposing party may call your damages into question, so having proof that they came from the accident is useful.
Second, get some shots of both of the cars. This will establish how much damage each vehicle sustained and perhaps help describe what happened leading up to the accident.
Last, take pictures of the surrounding area and any skid marks on the ground. If your version of the events ends up being different than the other driver’s, having pictures can help rectify the situation.
Another thing your accident attorney will want is a police report. As we mentioned above, you should call the police immediately after the accident. When they arrive, they will ask all the drivers a few questions and gather physical evidence. From this information, they will write up a report.
This report does two things. First, it stops other drivers from changing their stories later on. Sometimes, a driver will admit fault on the scene but decide to lie about what happens when you pursue compensation. Having a record of their initial testimony can be useful in stopping that from happening. The second thing a report does is give you a second person collecting physical evidence. If you miss a crucial picture or detail about the crash, the police may catch it.
Once you and your accident attorney start to pursue a personal injury lawsuit, you must decide on the number of benefits you deserve. One of the top reasons for receiving compensation is the physical injuries you sustained, so collecting medical records is very important.
The first thing they allow you to do is to add up all of your initial medical bills, which will be paid for in your suit. Next, a doctors assessment will give you an estimate of your future medical bills, as well as how physically limited you will be going forward. This opens your case up to a significantly greater number of benefits.
Part of your benefits could include payments for lost wages. While a significant portion of these benefits will likely be future lost wages, proving that you are already missing work due to your injuries is a strong piece of evidence. Not only will it raise the amount of compensation you are eligible for, but it will prove that you are not embellishing your injury.
Another piece of evidence that you may use is a deposition, which is a sworn statement made out of court.
Depositions go roughly as follows: Your legal team invites the other party to answer a series of questions, they take a legal oath to tell the truth, your attorney asks them those questions, and you create a written document based on their responses. What this does is give you a sworn recounting of the events surrounding the crash. Later, your accident attorney can compare that to other sworn testimonies and perhaps find that the other driver’s story has changed over time. This can help you win a case that is your words against theirs because a changing story is proof of a lack of reliability.
Another way you can solve cases that are your word against theirs is through a 3rd party witness.
What frequently happens during an accident is another driver or a pedestrian will be in the area and will see what happened. If this is the case, do not let them get away. If you do, you may lose a critical piece of evidence. What a 3rd party witness can do is back up your account of the crash and help you establish that the other driver was at fault. This can be crucial in difficult cases where the truth about what happened is up in the air.
When you make a personal injury claim, there is a significant amount of information that the opposing party can question. That includes the fault in the accident, the extent of your physical damages, your medical bills, and more. When this is the case, your accident attorney may recommend obtaining an expert to testify on your behalf. This will help establish your claims as credible and increase the number of benefits you are eligible for. Experts that are frequently used include doctors, accident reconstruction specialists, highway safety professionals, and accountants.
Sometimes, car and motorcycle accidents are solved without making a personal injury claim.
Other times, another driver was at fault and you are injured as a result. In this case, you need to hire a skilled accident attorney and use them to obtain your rightful compensation. When you do, there are many types of evidence that you may use to win the case. The 7 on this list are some of the most useful, but there could be some alternate forms that you use in your claim.
To explore those other options, you should consult with an experienced attorney.