Three Major Sources of Evidence in Car Crash Claims
To obtain compensation in a car crash or other injury case, the victim must prove negligence, or a lack of care, by a preponderance of the evidence, or more likely than not. That’s one of the lowest standards of proof in Texas law. So, a minimal amount of evidence could prove negligence. However, as most of us know, minimum efforts usually produce minimum results.
Maximum compensation is only available if a Sugar Land car accident attorney collects enough evidence, and presents this evidence skillfully enough, to overcome comparative fault and other common insurance company defenses. Additionally, there’s usually a connection between the amount of evidence a victim/plaintiff presents and the amount of compensation jurors ultimately award.
Hospital and other medical records are usually the most important component of the evidence in an injury claim. These records are challenging to collect and present in court.
Most victims work with several medical providers during the injury recovery process. Each provider usually has its own rules concerning patient privacy and other matters. Additionally, all providers must follow HIPAA and other federal laws in this area. So, a medical bill isn’t available for the asking.
A Missouri City personal injury lawyer knows how to cut through the bureaucratic red tape and obtain these vital records in a timely manner.
Medical bills, though vital, are sometimes incomplete. Frequently, these records only contain clinical facts, like diagnosis, treatment, and cost. These bills omit things like treatment notes that indicate the victim’s pain level at a particular time.
Incomplete medical bills support economic damages claims. But they don’t support noneconomic damage (pain and suffering) claims. To establish such claims, attorneys usually turn to friends, family members, and coworkers. These individuals cannot testify about the accident or the injury. But they can testify about the injury’s effects (e.g. Sam is in so much pain he can’t mow the lawn anymore).
On a related note, attorneys often partner with outside physicians who testify that the medical treatment was reasonably necessary.
Police Accident Report
Much like medical bills, the police accident report is a vital piece of evidence that’s often incomplete or inaccurate.
When emergency responders arrive at accident scenes, acts like collecting evidence and writing a report are very low on the priority list. Instead, they secure the scene and tend to injured victims. Furthermore, many officers don’t write reports until several hours, or even several days, after the accident.
The narrative portion is a concern as well, at least in fatal injury cases. If the victim didn’t survive, the reporting officer only hears one side of the story before s/he writes a report.
To solve this dilemma, attorneys often partner with accident reconstruction professionals. These engineers piece seemingly random bits of proof together to show jurors what really happened.
The initial police report is probably based on little more than the statements of the accident parties. Very few people loiter at accident scenes and give official statements to police officers.
Attorneys, usually in partnership with investigators, locate additional witnesses. Some witnesses don’t support a negligence case, and that’s okay. These witnesses help attorneys anticipate and refute insurance company defenses and, as mentioned, obtain maximum compensation.
Count on a Dedicated Fort Bend County Attorney
Injury victims are entitled to significant compensation. For a free consultation with an experienced personal injury attorney in Missouri City, contact the Henrietta Ezeoke Law Firm. We do not charge upfront legal fees in these matters.