Car accidents are chaotic, often traumatic events, but knowing the right questions to ask a witness can protect your rights to compensation and prevent you from being held liable for a wreck you didn’t cause. Even if you’re a safe driver with an unblemished driving record, another motorist who is busy texting, speeding, driving aggressively, or who simply makes a bad decision behind the wheel, can cause a collision. When that happens, you could be left with expensive damage to repair, the loss of your vehicle, or severe injuries.
Ensuring you have a reliable witness to the crash helps your Las Vegas car accident attorney get you the settlement you need to cover hospital bills, lost wages, and more.
Neutral Third-Party Witness
It’s common for the drivers involved in a crash to dispute who is most at fault. While first responders will do their best to reconstruct the physical scene of the accident and document their findings on the accident report, that report may not capture behaviors leading up to the accident, environmental considerations, or statements made by drivers before the police arrive.
If both parties maintain their innocence, the insurance companies and any court proceedings are potentially left with a confusing situation.
An unbiased witness can tip the scales in your favor, helping to demonstrate the other driver’s fault and ensuring that you can seek compensation for the damages caused by those actions.
Top Car Accident Witness Questions
When there’s a car accident, your first action should be to make sure you’re safe. You’ll need to exchange insurance information with the other driver and call the police to request an accident report.
While you’re waiting for officers to respond, look around and see who may be a witness to the accident so you can gather the evidence you need to protect your rights.
Start with these 10 basic questions for any car accident witness.
- Will You Give a Police Report or Sign a Statement? If the witness is willing to wait for the police and give a statement, you’ll have official documentation of their view of the accident.
- What is Your Contact Information? Right after a car wreck, when you’re dealing with injuries, damage, or the police, you may not be able to talk to your witness extensively. Try to get their contact information so they can be followed up with at a later date.
- What Did You See? You want to find out when the witness noticed the accident and a broad overview of what they saw to help your Las Vegas car accident lawyers better determine how much support their testimony offers your case.
- How Clear Was Your View? Where the witness was standing and what objects, if any, may have obstructed their view is vital to establishing what they may have seen and the level of detail they could make out.
- What Did You See Leading Up to the Accident? From changing traffic lights to distracted driving, this can help supply greater context to the other driver’s level of attention or state of mind.
- What Were the Road Conditions Before and During the Accident? Find out if there were any road obstructions, slippery surfaces, or low-light conditions that should have prompted the other driver to be more cautious.
- What Did You Do or See After the Accident? After the accident, did your witness attempt to render aid, potentially seeing or hearing evidence of recklessness on the part of the other vehicle’s driver, or did they see any attempts by the other driver to hide or minimize their fault?
- Do You Know Anyone Involved? Establishing whether or not a witness may be biased helps you establish the credibility of your witness or protects you from the other driver’s friend trying to help them out after the wreck.
- Did You Hear the Other Driver Make Any Statements? Did the witness hear the other driver make an extemporaneous statement, such as, “It was all my fault!” or “I only looked down for a moment!”
- Who Else May Have Seen the Accident? While one witness is good, multiple witnesses who can support your claim are even better. Find out if they know of any other witnesses or how to contact them.
Get the Car Accident Settlement You Need
The experienced personal injury attorneys at Valiente Mott are ready to listen to your story and help you get the car accident compensation you deserve. Las Vegas-born and raised, we’ll help you get the money you need to repair damages to your vehicle, reimburse you for medical bills, and help you put your life back together after a serious car wreck. Schedule your free car accident consultation by calling or reaching out online today.