You may not be able to win your car accident case or obtain the compensation that you deserve without evidence. Evidence is the foundation for most personal injury and wrongful death lawsuits in Arizona. It is a pillar of the civil justice system. Knowing what evidence you need to preserve and collect after a car crash in Arizona can help you build a stronger claim. If you need assistance gathering evidence, contact a car accident lawyer.
The Police Report
Always call the police after a car accident. Arizona law requires crash reporting for all vehicle collisions that cause injuries or property damage. Involving the authorities can create an accurate record of the crash that can serve as important evidence later. Law enforcement officers will record the names and information of all drivers, passengers and eyewitnesses, as well as the date, time, location and other crash details.
You can request a copy of your police report in the days following the car accident by calling the police station in the county where the crash took place. You may also be able to obtain a copy of the report by contacting your local Department of Motor Vehicle Services. There may be a small fee that you have to pay to obtain a certified copy of the police report.
Evidence Against the Other Driver
Arizona is a fault state, meaning all injured parties will file insurance claims with the carrier of the at-fault party after a car accident. Injured victims will then need to prove that the policyholder is to blame for the wreck using clear and convincing evidence. Without proof of fault, there may be a liability dispute. You or your lawyer will need to gather evidence to use against the other driver, such as:
- Driver identifying information
- Vehicle information
- Insurance information
- A confession of guilt
- A police citation
- Eyewitness recollections
- Photographs of the scene
- Video footage of the accident
- Pictures of the inside of the other driver’s car
- Cell phone records
- The vehicle’s black box
- Employment records, if the driver was on duty
Any information or documentation that can prove that the other driver was violating a traffic law or otherwise at fault for the crash can help you win your claim. If you need help collecting this evidence, contact a lawyer. A lawyer can revisit the scene of your car accident, interview eyewitnesses, collect copies of important documents, subpoena evidence, file Letters of Spoliation, and take other steps to obtain evidence against the other driver.
Medical Evidence and Proof of Losses
Next, you will need to provide evidence of your injuries and losses associated with the car accident. It is important not to sign a document sent to you by the insurance company called the Medical Authorization Release Form, however, as this may give the insurance company full access to your medical history to look for reasons to deny your claim. Instead, select which medical records to show the car insurance company with assistance from an attorney. You will also need proof of any other losses, such as property repair estimates, photographs of your vehicle damage and lost wage evidence.
How an Attorney Can Help
An experienced car accident lawyer in Arizona can be vital not only for preserving key evidence but for putting it all together in a way that tells a compelling story. Storytelling is how you will convince an insurance company, judge or jury that your version of events is the truth. A lawyer can hire expert witnesses and crash reconstruction experts to demonstrate fault, as well as use strong storytelling skills to get the best value for your claim. For more information about how to prove a car accident case, contact The Law Offices of John Phebus.