No one likes to think about the possibility of being injured in a car accident. However, after years of experience in the personal injury area, the personal injury attorneys at Skeeters, Bennett, Wilson & Humphrey encourage everyone to always be prepared for the worst-case scenario. On average, there are six million car accidents in the U.S. annually, and more than three million people are injured as a result. Many of these people find it beneficial to hire a lawyer to protect their legal rights.
Unfortunately, the number one mistake we see clients making is failing to get information from people who witnessed the crash. This is one of the top 10 tips we recommend for car accident victims, so here’s what you need to know about obtaining eyewitness information.
Why You Need Witness Information
After a car accident, the first action is to determine your level of injury and get immediate medical attention, even if you think your condition isn’t that bad. The next step is to gather contact information from all the present witnesses. This includes:
- Phone number
While it’s understandable that the trauma of a wreck brings about a great amount of stress and panic, do what you can to get this information as soon as possible or ask someone else at the scene to help.
If your car accident case requires legal assistance to secure necessary financial recovery, witnesses are often key to its success, as their statements reinforce the chain of events, especially if the insurance company is denying liability.
Keep in mind that third-party witnesses don’t have a stake in the outcome and therefore, your car accident attorney can use them as powerful advocates for you when negotiating with an insurance company or at trial.
Far too many times, though, injured clients are unable to get even basic details from people who saw the accident. Without names and contact information, it’s even more difficult for your legal team to get in touch with witnesses to learn what they remember about the accident. This increases the time and cost for the case process—but decreases your monetary recovery and the opportunity for a fair resolution.