If you are the victim of an auto accident and know that the other driver was at fault, you are entitled to compensation from the other driver’s insurance company. However, filing a claim for compensation requires proof. So how do you provide proof of your innocence? Many types of evidence are available that can help prove your credibility, such as pictures, videos, CCTV footage, and, most importantly, witness statements.
Without any witnesses, it is your word against the other driver, and when both of you believe that each other is at fault, it becomes increasingly difficult to determine who was actually at fault.
This is why third-party witnesses are crucial. If their recollection of the incident aligns with your version of the accident, you’ll have a stronger case when you take your claim to court.
This article will discuss why witnesses are important in an auto accident case.
Importance of Witnesses
After an auto accident, both drivers believe that the other driver is at fault, so when an insurance adjuster arrives at the scene, the first thing they’ll ask is, “were there any witnesses?”
They do this because insurance adjusters often decide which version of both stories is more credible based on the events recalled by third-party witnesses.
Thus, witnesses are important in an auto accident because they can help support your claim and ensure you are compensated for your loss.
How Witnesses Help Support Your Claim
The reason third-party witness statements are given more priority over drivers’ in an auto accident case is that they are unbiased and objective. The witnesses have no personal investment in the case whatsoever, so they have no reason to lie about what they saw. Let’s have a look at how witnesses can help support your claim.
One of the primary ways a witness can help support your claim is by proving negligence. Your lawyer will try to win your case by showing that the other driver was negligent, and if they have third-party witnesses backing up their statement, you’ll have an easier time winning your case in court.
In most auto accidents, both drivers are at fault, but if you’re totally innocent in the matter, you’ll be able to receive full compensation. Sometimes, the at-fault driver tries to blame the injured victim in an attempt to devalue their claim. Through witness statements, lawyers can find gaps and inconsistencies in the at-fault driver’s claim and what they did before and after the accident.
Filling Information Gaps
In auto accident cases, witness statements are an essential tool to fill in the information gaps and help you win your case. Sometimes, even the victims, due to pure trauma, cannot recall important details that can help support their claim, which leads to unfair results and loss of compensation. Witness statements eradicate this problem.
The primary benefit of using third-party witnesses for your claim is that they have no relation to the accident whatsoever; they weren’t harmed or part of it. In most cases, they also aren’t related in any way to either of the drivers. An objective view can help clear a lot of inconsistencies and information gaps, helping the judge presiding over the case reach the right verdict.
A witness statement adds credibility to an auto accident case. As stated above, it helps prove negligence and innocence and fills information gaps, ensuring a just decision is reached swiftly and the victim is compensated for their loss.
A witness could have recorded a video or taken a photo from their viewpoint. Such evidence can build credibility in a case and help the victim greatly. Even a solid written or recorded statement can persuade the judge and ensure the victim gets maximum compensation.
Now that you know the importance of witnesses in an auto accident, let’s look at which witnesses are helpful in such cases.
Who Can Provide A Witness Statement?
You can’t just ask your family member who was present at the accident scene to support your claim. Why? Because they will appear biased, even if they are telling the truth. Thus, the following are the type of witnesses that will be helpful in an auto accident.
You need very persuasive witnesses to convince the jury that you deserve to be compensated in full because of the other driver’s negligence. Thus, witnesses that have seen the wreck from another viewpoint are a great help.
Friends and family who were in the vehicles or witnessed the crash are not objective in their statements, affecting your claim. Thus, choose witnesses like pedestrians, other drivers, or CCTV footage from establishments around the accident scene that weren’t involved in the crash.
Witness to Injuries
If the at-fault driver’s lawyer is trying to undermine your injury, you can use your friends, family, or coworkers as witnesses and state how your injuries have affected your day-to-day life and hindered your performance personally and professionally.
Some accidents are complex, and it becomes difficult to explain to the jury why a certain event happened the way it did. This is where expert witnesses come in. Expert witnesses have certifications and knowledge in a particular field like medicine, physics, etc., and help support your claim by demonstrating the possibility of the accident and involvement of negligence.
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Are All Witnesses Credible?
When you are building an auto accident case based on witness testimonies, the primary thing to be concerned about is their credibility. The only way a judge or jury will consider witness statements is if they find them credible. However, this is not the case most times.
Third-party witnesses, when watching an auto accident, often do not take a mental inventory of the placement of the vehicles, the moment of the impact, or the negligence of the at-fault driver. If the witness was close to the accident, their first reaction will be to protect themselves. Thus, their testimonies cannot be trusted entirely. Therefore, if you want to use witness statements, it’s best to get multiple witnesses claiming the same narrative.
As you can see, an auto accident case can get quite messy and building it on witness testimonies requires professional experience. Moreover, collecting witness statements and depositions, cross-checking their credibility, and ensuring all records were gathered quickly is challenging.
Reach out to Boynton Beach Car Accident Lawyers. They have experience working on 14 types of auto accidents and offer a free initial consultation and excellent customer service.
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