Evidence in car accident lawsuits is something very crucial. This is because personal injury cases are civil, and as a general rule, “he who asserts must prove.” So, the strength of your evidence — as a plaintiff or defendant — determines if the balance of justice will tilt in your favor.
Circumstantial evidence is one of the types of evidence you need to prove the fault party’s negligence. If you’re wondering what it is, our Atlanta car accident lawyers break it down in this article. We will explain what this evidence type means and how it affects your injury claim.
What Is Circumstantial Evidence?
Generally, evidence in a car accident lawsuit is either direct or circumstantial. As the name implies, direct evidence proves a key contended fact. It is always present in any suit, whether criminal or civil, and it is easier to prove. It shows the liability or guilt of the fault party. Video footage of a driver running a red light is an excellent example of direct evidence.
Circumstantial evidence, also known as indirect evidence, is inferential proof. It does not directly link to any fact of the case, but you can infer by the surrounding circumstances. The inference is what leads to a conclusion, and most often, the decision is binding.
Some of the types of circumstantial evidence used in car accident cases include:
- Photographs of the crash site
- Diagrams showing how the accident happened
- Images showing the damage to your car, as well as all the motor vehicles involved in the occurrence
- Accident reconstruction report using diagrams or videos
- Skidmark analysis
In the place of glaring direct proof, your Atlanta auto accident lawyer will use circumstantial evidence to connect the dot to prove a fact. Rather than being apparent, it is suggestive. It hints at the presence of a thing; it helps prove some point, and that’s why the court allows it.
Furthermore, unlike criminal trials where the proof is “beyond reasonable” doubt, it is different in civil lawsuits. In a civil case, the proof is on a “balance of probabilities.” It means that the court places the evidence on an imaginary scale, and the person whose evidence outweighs the other wins. This is why while circumstantial evidence is not enough to convict a defendant in a criminal trial, it is enough to win a car accident case.
How Do You Use Circumstantial Evidence in a Car Accident?
As already established, circumstantial evidence is helpful in auto accident lawsuits. It is most beneficial in a hit-and-run crash, where the fault driver flees the scene. In that instance, you need to collect evidence from the crash site to prove the fault of the hit-and-run driver. This is because the driver can deny being at the accident scene after identifying them.
Here, a piece of good circumstantial evidence is a dent on the fault driver’s car from the point of contact. Even if the driver comes up with an explanation for the damage, you can use accident reconstruction analysis to disprove their claim. Also, you can use GPS to show that the motorist was at the accident location.
All these pieces of circumstantial evidence standing alone cannot help your case. However, when evaluated together, they will collectively point to the liability of the fault driver. Thus, you need to be able to bring together several pieces of evidence to build your case.
Do You Need a Lawyer to Prove Circumstantial Evidence?
Indeed, you do not need a lawyer in a car accident case. You can handle it yourself and likely secure fair compensation. However, if your case heads into litigation, and you’re relying on circumstantial evidence, then you need to hire an Atlanta car accident lawyer.
An attorney knows how to gather and use circumstantial evidence. They have the experience needed to understand this evidence type and connect the dots to prove a point. Also, the experienced trial lawyer knows how to disprove the defendant’s assertions. In summary, with a lawyer, your chances of winning without direct evidence are higher, and they will get you the maximum compensation.
Contact Our Top Atlanta Car Accident Lawyers Today!
Every car accident lawsuit’s success depends on who has a stronger case, and evidence is a massive part of it. At The Weinstein Firm, our team of expert auto accident lawyers has successfully used circumstantial evidence to win cases for our clients. We will do the same if you give us a chance. We offer free case reviews and charge no upfront fees. So, call us to schedule a consultation.