New York City Personal Injury Law Blog

How to Prove Who is Liable in a Car Accident Case?

Posted on Jan 19, 2015 in Car Accidents

Proving Liability

In a catastrophic car accident in New York, how do we prove liability? Liability means the other driver is responsible for your accident. To prove liability, your lawyer will have to show the jury a number of things. First, your lawyer will have to establish that you are more likely right than wrong, and what you are saying is true. The legal term for this is preponderance of evidence.

However, the main thing to show to the jury is that you are more likely right than wrong, and that is done by using various tactics and presenting different types of evidence. For instance, we could present testimonies of witnesses who were at the scene, and the photographs of the accident scene as evidence. Your lawyer will also call you to the stand and use your testimony, as you are one of the drivers involved in the accident.

Pretrial Testimonies and Police Report

Negligence

Proving liability in a car accident case is half the battle and a solid accomplishment for you to want to achieve. 

Your lawyer will also present the other driver’s pretrial testimony to show to the jury that the defense was also responsible for the accident. Another, important evidence could be the police report. The police officer who came to the scene after the accident could have observed something involved with the incident, and officer could be brought in to testify.

Employing Private Investigator

Your lawyer might also suggest using the services of a private investigator. This investigator will be asked to interview witnesses and get statements from the people who actually saw what had occurred. This information will be recorded in what is known as witness statement. Once this is recorded, then when the case comes up for trial even after a year or two, this statement can be provided to the witnesses to refresh their memories about what happened.

Recreating the Accident Scene

Your lawyer will also be using photographs of the accident scene, which are usually critical in proving your case. Testimonies taken during deposition are also very important to lock in statements of witnesses, so that they cannot change their statements at trial. Your lawyer will also suggest doing a recreation or animation of the accident, to make it clear to the jury about what exactly happened and how the accident took place. The reconstruction is usually a computer animation, which is based on testimonies about what happened.

Traffic Violations

Another important factor in proving who is liable in a car accident

is showing road traffic violations that were done by the other driver. There are strict rules and laws that have to be followed while driving in New York, and if the other driver has broken these rules then it becomes much easier to prove liability. If your lawyer is able to show that the other driver had broken some rule of the road, then there is clear evidence indicating negligence or carelessness. With such evidence, the jury can easily assess if the other driver was careless and responsible for the accident.

Hence all these testimonies and evidence put together, your lawyer will be able to show the jury that you are more likely right than wrong and what you are claiming is true.

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