Can a friend or relative be a witness in a car accident case? If you’ve been in a car accident then you may want to file an insurance claim or even sue with the help of an auto accident attorney. Legal matters like this can be confusing to non-lawyers or drivers who have never been involved in a car accident lawsuit. First-timers will often make incorrect assumptions and believe myths associated with how the legal system works.
We plan to clear up at least one legal myth at a time. This myth is associated with verbal testimony and bias. Here’s what almost all auto accident attorneys will tell you.
Can A Friend or Relative’s Testimony be Used to Help You?
We have been asked many times by clients if they can ask a friend or relative to be a witness in a car accident.
Yes, a friend or relative can be a witness in a car accident case. Personal injury law does not discriminate on eye witness testimony and if your friend or relative saw the accident or was even a passenger in the car at the time of the accident, then they can provide a witness statement to the police and even be called upon at trial if your claim goes to court.
But Aren’t They Bias?
Many drivers in car accidents are shocked to learn that a friend or relative can be a witness in a car accident case. They think that the bias that a friend or relative might show automatically disqualifies them from providing a statement and an account of the accident.
And although it may be true that a friend or relative will have a bias towards you, and may mention events in a way that is more favorable to you, an officer and lawyer will still want to hear their side of the story and the court will still allow their side of the story to be shared in trial, if it’s deemed necessary.
Always Collect As Much Witness Testimony as Possible
You should collect as much evidence as possible and be sure that all the most important information is included on the police report, no matter who is giving their side of the story.
Verbal testimony is still one of the best ways for an officer to collect evidence and for a lawyer to build a case. The idea that only visual evidence is admissible is a myth that has no bearing. Verbal testimony, even from a friend or relative, could completely change the outcome of your case. Never assume bias, always get as much evidence as possible and peak with your car accident lawyer as soon as you can.
Adding Testimony to a Filed Police Report
You can request to change a police report after the accident, but it is difficult and many times the new information given may not be submitted to the report. When the new testimony is added, there is a sense that it carries less importance than testimony and reports given at the scene, at the time of the motor vehicle accident.
It is difficult to add testimony but in some cases it may make sense to try. Speak with your lawyer before taking the time to change the report and discussed if it may help your case. Your attorney may be able to use your evidence in some other way. Discuss these options with your attorney first.
Speak to An Auto Accident Attorney
Why should you hire a car accident attorney? Drivers and passengers who work with attorneys will collect settlements that are 3 times higher than those who do not hire an attorney. Speak with an attorney and make sure that your insurance claim, or auto accident lawsuit settles in your favor. Ask your attorney these 5 questions.