In order to have a car accident claim decided in your favor, you must be able to show that your injuries were caused by the negligent acts of the at-fault party. Often, the only witnesses to a car accident are the parties involved- the plaintiff and the defendant. Each party will have their own version of precisely how the accident unfolded, with one party usually blaming the other in the majority of cases.
In these cases, it is simply the word of one party against the other. An eyewitness account from a third party can be especially helpful in proving a car accident claim.
Witness statements can offer persuasive evidence of fault. And, although an eyewitness account of your accident may help you in proving your claim, it is not necessary to have one to file a claim in Colorado.
Always after a car accident, addressing any injuries is the primary concern. After your injuries have been tended to, only then should you concern yourself with identifying any potential witnesses. Sometimes, witnesses will approach an injury victim to offer their account of what happened.
Don’t ever try to persuade the witness to say you were not at fault. Instead, ask if they would be kind enough to write down their contact information and a short statement about what they saw. If they only have time to leave their contact information, that will suffice for the meantime.
All witnesses, however, are not created equal. Using a non-credible witness could actually be more of a detriment than a help to your car accident claim. Therefore, it is important to carefully evaluate a potential witness before naming them. When assessing an individual as a witness, consider the following questions:
- Did the individual only hear the accident, or did they actually witness it?
- Did the individual have their attention diverted from the accident by a child, a pet, or other distraction?
- Did the individual witness the accident in its entirety?
- How did the individual witness the accident- from the sidewalk, from another vehicle?
- Does the potential witness seem like an honest individual?
- Does the individual have good eyesight and hearing? Do they appear to have a sharp memory?
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Typically, any individual who witnessed the accident first-hand may be considered an eyewitness, including pedestrians and passersby, business owners or utility and construction workers in the vicinity, and other motorists driving nearby at the time of the accident.
The claims adjuster for the insurance company is always interested in eyewitness accounts and will review each statement you provide. Then, they will typically contact each witness and ask the individual if they are related to you or knew you prior to the accident. The adjuster will also want to know if the potential witness has any vested interest in the outcome of the claim before they determine if the witness account is valid. If the witness is deemed credible, they may be asked to appear in court.
Contact Our Pueblo Car Accident Attorneys
If you or someone you love has been injured in a car accident in Pueblo, Colorado, it is important to know that the law is on your side. We can help you fight aggressively for your rights to compensation. We will fight the large insurance companies and make sure you receive the money you need to put your life back together again. CallPueblo attorneys at Smith & Smith, today for a FREE CONSULTATION – (719) 544-0062.