Taking photos might be the last thing on your mind after a car accident. After all, you might be dealing with injuries and getting vehicles safely off the road. To complicate matters further, you are likely stressed, angry, or upset, which can make it difficult to think clearly and act logically.
Photos, however, can serve as valuable evidence in determining fault and the overall value of a settlement claim. Connecticut car accident attorney James A. Welcome shares how photos and videos can be exceptionally valuable when making a claim.
How Photos and Videos Can Help Your Car Accident Case
Witness statements and police reports provide valuable evidence, but words only go so far. If you have photographic or video evidence, you’ll have more details to support your claim.
The benefits of photos and videos include the following:
- They provide a snapshot in time. When witnesses are interviewed after an accident, they may forget important details, especially if a case has been pending for months. Further, memory and perceptions are not infallible. By having a photo of what happened, you’ll have an exact picture of what happened at the time of the accident.
- Photos fill in the details. Witness statements can be vague, and a police report might have complicated drawings that are tough to decipher. A photograph allows an insurance company, judge, or jury to see the whole story in a convenient visual format.
- They can be used as evidence. In a “he said / she said” case, determining who’s telling the truth is practically impossible. A photograph doesn’t lie, and it can help to bolster or impeach a witness testimony.
Tips for Taking Photos
Here are some helpful tips for getting photos of a crash:
- More is better. Err on the side of taking too many photos. A lot of photos are better than not having enough.
- Get close-ups. Zoom on details of property damage and injuries.
- Zoom out. Taking a panoramic view of the scene can also provide context for the crash
- Don’t delay. The sooner you can get photos, the better. This preserves evidence.
If you’re unable to take photos due to an injury or other circumstances, ask someone you trust to take pictures for you. This person could be a passenger or someone who witnessed the accident. Get the person’s contact information to follow up on photographic evidence if it’s someone you don’t know.
If neither of these situations is feasible, you can still take pictures at a later date. Photos after the fact are better than no photos at all.
What to Photograph
There’s a lot of visual evidence to document that can help your case, including the following:
- Injuries: If you plan to seek compensation for medical treatment, you must document your injuries while they’re fresh.
- The accident scene: Photograph the vehicles, skid marks, and scattered parts to help adjusters and forensic experts investigate the crash.
- The location and surrounding areas: This includes weather conditions, road conditions, obstructions, and traffic signs.
- Witness identification: Photograph the contact information of witnesses who are on the scene. It’s also a good idea to snap pictures of the driver’s license and insurance card of the other driver(s).
- License plates: License plate numbers will probably be logged in the police report. Still, it’s also helpful to document this evidence, especially if the driver flees the scene.
Need to Hire a Lawyer? Contact an Experienced Connecticut Car Accident Attorney
If you’ve been injured in a motor vehicle accident, the Law Offices of James A. Welcome can help. We have more than 19 years of experience advocating for the rights of accident victims. Contact us for a free injury consultation.