Every year, three million people in the United States are hurt in car accidents. If you were recently involved in one, you may be tasked with proving that it was not your fault. In the following guide, you’ll discover how to prove you are innocent and the other driver was at fault in an auto collision.
How Do You Prove a Car Accident Was Not Your Fault?
One of the first actions the authorities perform after a car wreck has occurred is determining which motorist is at fault. Police officers at the scene usually determine this by observing and diagramming the position of the vehicles and taking into account factors such as road conditions and eyewitness accounts.
Insurance claims are often based on the accident report, also known as a police report, which results from these activities. Unfortunately, it can be difficult to prove who is at fault with some auto accidents. And in the case of no-fault and at-fault locations, how your claim is settled can often vary.
About No-Fault States
Some states have a no-fault automobile insurance system, which means they have automobile insurance coverage that allows the driver to recover financial losses from their own insurance company, regardless of who caused these losses.
Is Connecticut a No-Fault Insurance State?
Connecticut had no-fault insurance laws before 1994 that required drivers to carry $5000 worth of reparations coverage benefits. No matter who was at fault, the benefit paid for lost wages that occurred due to injuries sustained in the collision, along with medical expenses. In exchange for the reparations coverage benefits, the law prohibited the collision victim’s right to sue the person at fault.
After 1994, CT became an at-fault state, meaning the insurance company can deny an insurance claim if they consider the driver to be at fault in the wreck. Nevertheless, you can dispute their findings. For instance, if you received a ticket when the car wreck happened, or the insurance company is basing their judgment on the accident report, you can fight the citation and even have the report changed.
Changing the Accident Report
Accident reports are not set in stone, and you can have it changed if you have justifiable cause. Try to get in touch with the police officer that created the report, and speak directly with them about your version. After doing so, they may even amend it, which can help immensely with your insurance company.
What You Must Prove to Receive Compensation for Your Injuries
One of the best ways to receive compensation for injuries you sustained in an auto collision is to prove the other driver is at fault. It’s also important that you never admit that you are at fault.
Proving that you are innocent and that you are not at fault in the car accident involves avidly collecting proof in the way of strong evidence and supporting documentation. Thorough record-keeping after the accident will help build your case and also make the documentation handy for the insurance companies. These actions will go a long way to help prove you are entitled to compensation for your injuries.
How to Prove You are Not at Fault in a Car Accident
Besides proving your innocence after an auto collision, you may want to hold the negligent motorist liable for compensating you for any losses incurred. This can be challenging since it usually means more than establishing a claim with their insurance company. To receive compensation, you have to prove you are innocent and that the other driver caused the crash. It is essential that you collect supporting physical evidence related to the accident for this to happen.
Gathering Crucial Physical Evidence
Gathering any physical evidence available is crucial to establishing the other driver’s fault in causing the crash and any losses you sustained. What follows are good examples you can collect to help prove your claim and be awarded damages. Be sure to save all the details once you obtain them and keep them in a secure location.
Photos: The old adage, “a picture is worth a thousand words” is never truer than after a car crash, and they can provide dramatic evidence in court. Be the perfect amateur shutterbug and snap photos of aspects such as the point(s) of impact, tread marks, conditions of the road and the damage to you and the vehicles if you are able.
The accident report: For technical reasons, the accident report won’t be admissible in court. It can, however, help the insurance adjuster’s judgment be in your favor. Also, the police officer who filled out the accident report can testify to how they determined the crash occurred and any tickets issued, all of which can convince the jury the other driver is liable.
Eyewitness statements: Another piece of useful information from the accident report is the contact information for eyewitnesses who observed the crash. Their statements about how the crash happened can corroborate the critical chain of events that led to the other driver’s negligence.
Medical bills: Save records and receipts of all medical expenses related to the accident. This includes the cost of medication, rehabilitative and assistive tools and transportation if you travel to see a health expert or physical therapist.
Pay stubs and income tax returns: If you lose wages due to the accident, then save all the relevant pay stubs and income tax returns. Your employer can also issue you a statement to establish applicable financial losses and any impact to your employment benefits.
Shop receipts: Save receipts for the shop costs of repairing your vehicle. You can also claim expenses incurred for having it towed or renting a vehicle while yours was being repaired.
Event data recorder: If your vehicle comes equipped with an event data recorder, it can collect evidence that supports your case such as braking, speed and steering that happened during the collision.
Cameras: Another helpful piece of tech is cameras installed in the area that are focused on the accident’s location. If your vehicle has a dashboard camera, review the footage, too. Try to determine if the other driver violated any traffic laws, such as driving under the influence or with an expired license.
Dealing with insurance companies can be a chore, especially if you were severely injured in an auto collision. The good news is that you don’t have to do it alone, and you can hire an expert attorney such as the Moynahan Law Firm to help protect your rights and prove your innocence.
The Moynahan Law Firm specializes in car accidents, and their professional legal team can help you collect and determine the critical evidence needed for the investigation into your case. Please call us today at (203) 597-6364 to schedule your free, no-obligation consultation.