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Why Are Witnesses the Most Crucial Part of an Accident Case?

By Tomwsulcer (Own work) [CC0], via Wikimedia Commons
Sometimes the police aren’t enough: Make sure you do your best to secure an eyewitness.
At the scene of a car accident, the last thing you may be thinking about doing is documenting who is at the scene, and canvassing the area to see if anyone saw the crash.  You think that the police will do it, that someone will send you their information, or come forward and tell the police they saw the crash.  The problem is, if you rely on other people to document what happened to willfully send their information to the police, you could be waiting forever because rarely do police take many written statements and people hardly ever come forward with information.  In this article, we will give reveal why it is so important to document the crash, to obtain people’s information at the scene, and make sure you are able to prove your injuries and limitations through other people’s eyes.

Start Collecting Information at the Scene of the Accident

The insurance companies and their lawyers focus a lot on what people say or do at the scene of a car crash.  Without witness testimony, it can you your word against the person who hit you.  Knowing this, if you are ever in a car or truck crash, make sure to document all of the people at the scene, and take their name, address, and phone numbers.  Ask them if they saw the crash, and have your family help you.  Ask them if is ok if you can contact them later in case you need to prove the other person caused the accident.  Write down a summary of what the person tells you exactly, or get help doing it.  Follow up with them shortly after.  If you are hurt and need a lawyer, we always believe it is helpful to a case if we are able to have witnesses who saw the crash.

Can You Prove That You are Hurt?

Insurance companies and their lawyers will always try and argue that you were not hurt, or feeling pain, at the scene of the crash.  That is why witnesses that can come forward and say they saw you in pain, that they saw you tell the offices or medical personal you are hurt, are very helpful.  They are independent and not there for either side.  Witnesses are often very trustworthy because they are not for one side or the other.  Make sure that if you in pain at the scene of a car accident that you do not just keep it to yourself.  Do not be afraid to tell the person who hit you that you are hurt, tell the police you are hurt, and tell bystanders.  It is not time to be macho or to brush it off.

The identity of an independent witness to an accident can be the difference as to whether you will have a successful claim or not. First you want to be sure that everyone is okay.  An accident scene can be chaotic and confusing.   After police and any paramedics have been called, survey the accident scene for anyone who is standing around who may have witnessed the accident.  Don’t hesitate to ask any witnesses for the name, address and phone number.  Most people will be happy to help you.  If you do identify a witness(s), give their information to the investigating police officer.  When you obtain an attorney to represent you, make sure you give this information on the first visit to the office.

But I Thought It Was Clear What Happened, I Got Rear-Ended!

Because we have handled thousands of cases like yours, we know that people who cause accidents often lie about who caused the accident.  It is very rare to hear someone say, “Yes, the accident is my fault”.  Even if you are stopped waiting for a red light, they will say you slammed on your brakes and that they could not stop from hitting you, or that they skid into you because of ice or rain or leaves.  They will say that they did not have the red light, and that you went through a red light or stop sign.   Eyewitnesses are crucial to prove who caused the crash.  Get their information, and canvas the area.  Check for video, local businesses who may have surveillance, poles or other structures that have video attached, and anything you can think of that may have documented what happened.

The statement of an independent witness will assure you the ability to pin the accident on the correct responsible party.   So, collect information, write it all down, know who said what, and if you are hurt then see the doctor or emergency room and report it.  Call our office and we will tell you exactly what you need to do to be able to prove your case.  We will contact the witnesses after a crash so you do not have to.  You can focus on your health and getting better without having to deal with the insurance companies.  Call us now at 856-665-5709 or visit us at www.ciecka.com  Click to the right to join our list for special newsletters, blogs, and free legal advice.  If you are hurt in a accident, call us and we will help you.

If you are hurt and need help, contact us immediately so we can go to work for you.  We help injured people get compensation and medical treatment so they can get back to health and their daily activities without having to deal with the insurance companies.