Pursuing and maximizing a car accident claim requires solid evidence to prove who is at-fault for the accident and the extent of your damages. Evidence can come in many forms, from electronic evidence to police reports. In some cases, there may also be eyewitnesses to the accident but not every witness may be seen as unbiased or credible. Learn what makes a credible witness in a car accident claim.
Credible Witnesses Are Not Biased
In a car accident claim, each driver will have a version of events that led up to the crash and its aftermath. Driver testimony and statements are an important part of a claim. However, each driver’s version of events usually differs and insurance adjusters will look for other accounts to better determine what happened and assign liability.
A credible witness is a third-party who does not have a stake in the outcome of the car accident claim. A third-party does not have anything to gain or lose in the case. In other words, a credible witness is a source of unbiased information.
For example, if you are hit from behind in a rear-end collision, it may seem obvious that liability falls to the other driver. But if that driver claims that something you did affected their driving or disputes what the traffic signal indicated, a pedestrian who witnessed the accident may be able to corroborate your version of events. Assuming the pedestrian was uninjured and has no stake in the claim, that person may be a credible witness for your car accident case.
What Makes a Witness Credible for Your Car Accident Claim?
There are several factors that go into what makes a credible witness. The witnesses’ background, physical condition and personal character may come into play as well as the circumstances by which they witnessed the accident.
Witness Background and Character
Insurance adjusters may investigate the background and character of witnesses, especially in cases where compensation amounts may be high. A credible witness would be someone not related to anyone in the accident and have no financial or personal interest in the outcome of the claim. So, other passengers in your vehicle may offer their testimony but they may not always be seen as unbiased in their accounts of the accident.
Other factors about a witnesses’ background or character that may affect credibility include:
- Criminal background
- Past false testimony or history of dishonesty
- Physical limitations, such as poor eyesight or cognitive issues that could bring skepticism to an eyewitness account
- History of alcohol or drug use, especially ahead of the accident
Witness Perspective of the Crash
Other factors that play into the credibility of a witness for your accident claim have to do with the witness’ location, activities and behavior at the time of the crash. For instance, if a pedestrian witnessed the accident but was listening to music through headphones or earbuds, they may be perceived as distracted or unable to hear some of what happened leading up to the crash.
Other drivers may not have been involved in the accident though they witnessed it. These drivers’ testimony may prove helpful in your claim but other drivers are often concerned about their own safety in those moments right after an impact. Their credibility depends on their location and proximity to the accident.
It’s also critical that witnesses maintain a consistent narrative of events. If a witness changes their story, embellishes details or becomes confused, that can affect credibility and throw doubt on their account.
Help with Your Car Accident Claim
If you’ve been injured in a car accident, don’t go it alone. An experienced car accident lawyer like the team at Brandon J. Broderick, Attorney at Law, can advocate for your best interest and pursue fair compensation for your damages. Our attorneys will interview witnesses and build solid evidence to help with your car accident claim.
At Brandon J. Broderick, Attorney at Law, you can count on us to work tirelessly for your quality of life. With our long track record of success, we’ve helped people just like you move forward after sustaining an injury that was caused by another’s negligence. Contact us now for a free legal consultation.