To prove you are not at fault in a car accident, you will need to show sufficient evidence that another party was at fault. This evidence may include the police report, eyewitness statements, photos or videos of the scene, and traffic camera footage.
Why Is Proving Fault in a Car Accident Important?
First things first: Pennsylvania is a no-fault insurance state. This means that, after a car accident, you generally file a claim with your own insurer to seek payment of your medical bills – regardless of who caused the collision. However, your role in the accident will affect other claims you can make and how much you can recover.
According to 42 PA Cons Stat § 7102, Pennsylvania is a modified comparative negligence state, which means your reward can be reduced by the percentage you are found to be at fault for the accident. This makes proving fault in a car accident crucial.
Consider the following:
- Another car runs a red light and hits you, but you were speeding at the time.
- It’s determined that while the other driver was 70 percent at fault for the accident, you were 30 percent at fault.
- Your damages total $100,000.
- Because you were 30 percent at fault for the collision, the maximum amount you could receive in this situation is $70,000.
Missing out on $30,000 is a big deal. With that money, you could take time off work, hire someone to look after your children, and pay your medical bills. You want to recover everything you need to pay for your injury-related losses.
For a free legal consultation, call 412-661-1400
Evidence That May Prove Fault in a Car Accident
When you team up with a lawyer from our firm, they can investigate your case and gather all necessary evidence, including:
A Copy of the Police Report
If you called the police to the accident scene, they likely filed a report. This document will list the time, date, and location of the collision. The officer might have also listed some extra details about the accident, like whether anybody appeared intoxicated or if any traffic citations were issued.
This information can support your pursuit of compensation.
If other people saw your accident happen, we can use their statements to support your case. Eyewitnesses can include other passengers, bystanders, and law enforcement officials.
We can also consult with expert witnesses, such as accident reconstruction specialists, to learn more about what happened.
Traffic Camera Footage
Many intersections and major roadways come equipped with traffic cameras. These devices record collisions, which can be essential in proving that you didn’t cause a car accident.
Our lawyers can get this footage for you.
Black Box Data
Nowadays, some modern cars come with “black boxes.” These electronic devices track the speed, force of impact, and other data in collisions. We can use this data to verify certain aspects of your case, like speed before impact, braking times, and speed at impact, among other things.
Evidence From the Accident Scene
An accident scene tells a thousand words. Glass on the roadway illustrates the force of impact. Smashed doors, spoilers, and trunks show what type of accident happened.
If you have any pictures of the accident scene and your vehicle, keep them. Even the smallest detail can prove instrumental in advancing your case.
Your Medical Records
To recover compensation, you must prove that you suffered harm. Your medical records demonstrate:
- The severity of your condition
- Your diagnosis and prognosis
- Your necessary treatments
We can use this information to show that because of another party’s actions, you were hurt and deserve compensation.
The Evidence We Collect Must Prove These Elements
Under the law, proving fault requires proving negligence. With the evidence we find, we must establish:
- The other party owed you a duty of care. This means they had an obligation to drive their vehicle with reasonable care and prudence.
- The other party violated this duty of care by acting carelessly or recklessly. For example, speeding, driving while intoxicated, or disregarding traffic signals can violate a driver’s duty of care.
- The other party caused the accident, and you suffered harm.
- You have damages stemming from your accident, including medical bills, lost income, and other related expenses.
If successful, you could recover compensation for the full cost of your losses.
Proving Fault, Negligence, and Liability
The aftermath of a car accident is chaotic. You might not understand your legal options or how to proceed. That’s where our car accident lawyers come in. We will investigate your collision and gather evidence in an effort to prove your right to damages.
We will also:
- Identify and review the applicable insurance policy
- File your insurance claim
- Negotiate a settlement
- Interview witnesses and field consultants
- Request a copy of the police report
- Calculate your injury-related losses
- File your lawsuit within the applicable statute of limitations (42 Pa. C.S.A. § 5524)
We also help injured claimants on a contingency-fee basis, so you won’t pay anything upfront for our help.
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Begin Your Free Case Review With Berger and Green
If you or a loved one was involved in a car accident, Berger and Green can manage your case. Using our network of investigative resources, we can prove that you’re not at fault for your accident. We will pursue the full cost of your medical bills, lost income, and pain and suffering.
To begin your free case review with our injury firm, dial (412) 661-1400.