Do I Need Witnesses to Prove That I Didn’t Cause My Bicycle Collision?
There’s no question that good witnesses can be a great help to you any time you’re involved in any type of a bicycle accident. If someone witnessed your collision and is prepared to tell law enforcement officers that you didn’t do anything to cause it, that corroborates your statement to officers that you weren’t at fault. If the witness agrees to, if necessary, testify on your behalf in any lawsuit you bring against the negligent person who did, in fact, cause the accident, this can only strengthen your case.
Consequently, if one or more people observe what happened, by all means talk to them to get their version of the accident. Also make sure to get their names and contact information for possible future use by you or your lawyer.
If, however, there doesn’t seem to be any witnesses, don’t despair. You have other ways of proving your lack of fault.
What a Bicycle Lawyer Can Do for You
One of the most important services an experienced local bicycle accident lawyer can provide you is his or her ability to thoroughly investigate your accident. He or she also likely has the necessary resources to do so. A good lawyer will never rely solely on witness statements, even when they support your case. Instead, he or she probably will conduct his or her own investigation, including doing the following:
- Visiting the accident scene as soon as possible to take photos.
- Attempting to find video footage of your accident, such as from traffic cams or surveillance cameras that nearby businesses have on their buildings.
- Obtaining any relevant weather information for the date and time of your accident.
- Reviewing your medical records to ascertain what type of injuries you received and their seriousness.
- Reviewing the damage to your bicycle to ascertain what likely caused it.
The hard evidence your lawyer amasses from his or her investigation will carry more weight than witness statements regarding fault. This is true both at the negotiation stage with the defendant’s insurance company and during a trial if one becomes necessary. After all, witness statements sometimes tend to be tenuous, especially as time goes by and memories fade. Since hard evidence doesn’t fade, it’s harder for an insurance company or a defendant’s lawyer to dispute it.
Actually, in terms of witness statements, your lawyer may engage the services of so-called expert witnesses to give depositions or trial testimony on your behalf. By definition, an expert witness is a person permitted to testify at a trial because he or she possesses special knowledge or proficiency in a particular field that is relevant to the case. As you might expect, expert witness testimony carries far more weight than the testimony of bystanders who saw your accident happen. If you would like to speak with a bicycle accident lawyer then a lawyer from Brandy Austin Law Firm, PLLC may be of assistance.