Having witnesses to your car accident can strengthen your claim for compensation against the negligent driver but only if they are credible.

Importance of Witness Credibility in a Car Accident Case

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When you are seeking compensation for your injuries following a car accident, you need evidence to prove your case. This is true even if you settle your claim with the negligent driver’s insurance company without litigation. Having witnesses to your collision is a type of evidence that can strengthen your claim’s value. However, not all witnesses are equal. Their credibility will have a direct impact on how helpful they are to your case.

Why Are Eyewitnesses Important?

When the insurance company disputes their insured’s liability for causing your crash, it can be extremely helpful to have witnesses who support your statements about how the accident occurred. This does not mean that your testimony is not valuable. However, the insurance adjuster or jury will see you and the other driver as biased given your stake in the outcome of your case.

Helpful witnesses can be passengers in your vehicle or neutral witnesses who saw what happened. Neutral third-party witnesses are often perceived as the strongest ones because they do not know you and have no personal or financial stake in your case.

Factors That Can Affect Witness Credibility

Credibility refers to how believable a person is. If a witness appears trustworthy and reliable, he will be considered credible, and his statement will be taken seriously by the insurance adjuster and the jury if your case goes to trial. If he is perceived as not credible, his statement might not be believed and could lead to your own credibility being questioned as well.

Many factors can make a witness less credible. The insurance adjuster, judge, or jury will want to determine whether:

  • His statement is inconsistent with ones he gave in the past
  • He actually saw your accident occur
  • He appears to remember what happened accurately
  • His testimony is inconsistent with other witness statements or evidence
  • He has a reputation for lying or appears to be lying when making his statement
  • He has a financial stake in your case
  • He is a family member or friend with a personal stake in your case
  • He has a prior criminal record
  • He has reduced vision or hearing that could have affected what he saw or heard
  • He was intoxicated

You need the assistance of an experienced car accident attorney to evaluate the credibility of your witnesses and the other driver’s witnesses, as well as to collect other evidence that supports your claim. At the Andrew Kim Law Firm, PLLC, we understand how devastating suffering any injuries in a car accident can be, and we are here to aggressively fight for the compensation you deserve. Call our Bellevue office to schedule your free consultation to learn more about how we can help you.

Category: Car Accidents


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