Even the most careful driver can get involved in a car accident. Even if you follow all the relevant traffic laws and keep your eyes on the road, another driver may crash into you. If you were not primarily to blame for the accident, that driver should compensate you for your losses. However, you’ll need to prove that the other motorist largely caused the crash.
Indiana practices a modified comparative negligence system. This means your contribution to the crash will affect the amount you can recover. However, as long as you were less than 51 percent at fault, you can still claim compensation. You will need to have evidence to prove that you didn’t cause the crash. You will also need to present proof that you suffered the losses you’re claiming. Working with an Indiana car accident lawyer can improve your chances of getting the compensation you deserve. The sooner you contact them, the better it will be since they will need to collect important evidence.
Collecting Evidence of Fault Following a Car Accident
It is not enough to believe that your actions didn’t contribute to the crash. Insurance companies and law courts will require hard evidence. Some of the things that will support your claim include:
The police report. This is an important document. It will typically include facts like the date, time, and location of the crash and possibly the officer’s opinion on what caused the crash. The weather, road conditions, and lighting at the time of the accident are also likely to be included. If a driver was cited for a traffic violation like speeding or running a red light, this will be written up.
Photos and videos of the scene. If you are not incapacitated after the accident, take pictures of the vehicles involved as well as the surrounding area. Things are likely to be moved soon after so you need to capture the immediate aftermath if you can. If you’re too hurt to do anything, your lawyer may try to track down people who took photos. Surveillance cameras may also have captured what happened. Experienced Indiana car accident lawyers know to look for all available sources of evidence.
Eyewitness statements. Bystanders or passengers often have valuable information. The more impartial the individual is, the more convincing they will be if they support your account of events.
Expert testimony. Sometimes, you may need a traffic expert or an accident scene reconstructionist to give their analysis of the crash. They will examine the area, look at photos or videos, and review witness statements to draw a conclusion. If they determine that your actions didn’t lead to the crash, this will benefit you.
Gathering evidence is hard work and it can take time. That’s why it’s so important to reach out to a lawyer as soon as possible after the accident. This will give them an opportunity to build a strong case.
Collecting Evidence of Injury After the Crash
If you received serious injuries or suffered a permanent disability, your medical expenses will be high. You could need hospitalization, surgery, rehabilitation, and medication. Serious crashes can easily result in hundreds of thousands of dollars in expenses. You may not be able to get the full amount from the at-fault driver’s insurer. However, you need to ensure you get the maximum amount possible. This means you need to itemize and quantify all your expenses and other losses. You will have to present evidence which may include:
Medical records. These will establish the extent of your injuries. The report should document your visits to the emergency room, subsequent doctor’s appointments, and results of tests or scans.
Physician testimony. Your doctor can provide further information on your prognosis and the treatments you have received. They should also indicate any future procedures or treatments you will need as a result of your injuries.
Expert testimony. Your doctor may be seen as biased. Therefore, your lawyer may contact an objective medical expert who would review your records and provide an opinion.
The financial expert analysis. You will need to provide evidence of your economic losses. Your attorney may reach out to a financial expert to back up your claim.
If you don’t work with a lawyer, you may think your doctor’s statement is enough to get you fair compensation. However, this may not be the case.
Call Stewart|Phelps|Wood to Discuss Your Claim
The best way to get full compensation is to hire a skilled Indiana car accident lawyer. We will help you gather all the evidence you need to prove your losses. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation.