When you're injured in a car wreck, determining who was at fault is crucial for receiving damages. However, it's not uncommon for the other parties involved to dispute your version of events. In such cases, filing a personal injury lawsuit may be necessary to ensure you recover the fair compensation you deserve. To succeed in your claim, you need compelling and convincing evidence. This is where dashcam footage can play a crucial role.
If you were not at fault, having dashcam footage as evidence can be more impactful than solely relying on word of mouth. It provides a tangible visual record of the incident, offering proof of another driver's wrongdoing. By convincingly demonstrating the other driver's negligence, you can seek maximum compensation for your injuries, lost wages, and pain and suffering.
However, using dashcam footage requires caution. First, there are legal and privacy considerations to keep in mind when utilizing dashcams. Secondly, the footage you believe supports your case could potentially be used against you. Talk with an Austin car accident lawyer about your case.
In this post, we'll delve into the essential questions surrounding the use of dashcams in cases involving car wreck injuries. We'll cover the legality of dashcams, how they work, their admissibility in court, and both their benefits and possible drawbacks for your personal injury claim.
What are Dash Cams and How Do They Work?
Dash cams are compact video cameras that can be easily installed on the windshield or dashboard of your car. Their purpose is to capture real-time footage of road events, providing an accurate visual account of what transpired during an accident.
With advancements in technology, dashcams have become more affordable and offer higher quality video recordings. This allows drivers worldwide to rely less on unreliable eyewitness testimony and still photographs after an accident. The evidence can be key, even if the accident involves a person in a pedestrian accident.
Are Dash Cams Legal?
The legality of dashcams varies across states, with each jurisdiction having specific rules and regulations. While most states generally permit the use of dashcams, certain restrictions and requirements may apply.
In the state of Kansas, dashcams are legal, although they are subject to restrictions regarding windshield obstructions. The law states that dashcams must not "substantially obstruct" the driver's vision.
When installing a dashcam in your vehicle, it's crucial to ensure that it doesn't impede your optimal view of the road. It's advisable to position the camera on the car's dashboard rather than on the windshield to comply with the law.
Privacy laws in some states prohibit recording on private property without the express permission of the owner. These laws also make it illegal to record conversations without obtaining consent from all parties involved.
While most dashcams focus on recording external events, some models also capture audio inside the vehicle, including conversations between the driver and passengers. Thus, it's essential to have a good understanding of the specific privacy laws in your state before using a dashcam.
Can Dashcam Footage be Admitted in Court as Evidence?
Dashcam footage can be used as evidence in court as long as it is of sufficient quality and supports the veracity of your statement. If you've been injured in a t-bone accident, the Dashcams may be helpful to show exactly what happened.
For example, certain cases, dashcam video footage has been admitted as evidence during a trial involving a police officer who accidentally shot a motorist during a routine traffic violation stop. The dashcam footage played a crucial role in determining the sequence of events and establishing liability.
How Does a Dashcam Help my Personal Injury Case?
The age-old adage that "a picture is worth a thousand words" particularly holds true when it comes to car wreck injuries. Dashcams can capture invaluable evidence that greatly strengthens your case, eliminating the need for endless debates and conflicting accounts. Instead, the focus shifts directly to the footage itself: "let's see what the camera shows." In particular scenarios such as uninsured motorist claims, when the driver leaves the scene, it may be the evidence needed to save your case.
By providing an unbiased visual representation of the incident, a dashcam's footage can offer peace of mind and concrete evidence of your innocence if you are a safe and cautious driver.
Without dashcam footage, if you find yourself in an accident where the other driver is at fault, it essentially becomes your word against theirs. The court then relies on assessing the credibility and veracity of witnesses to determine liability and award damages. However, people can be convincing when presenting falsehoods.
Unlike human perception, a camera is objective and doesn't lie. If a police report needs to be corrected, a dashcam video may be the strongest evidence you have to make the correction. It records events as they truly occurred. This can be a game-changer when insurance companies and defendants try to shift blame onto you, downplay the severity of the accident, or minimize the extent of your injuries. Dashcam footage leaves little room for interpretation and significantly strengthens your position.
When handled by an experienced personal injury attorney, dashcam footage becomes a central piece of evidence that can be rigorously used to advocate for your case and secure the compensation you rightfully deserve.
Pro tip: After a crash, keep your dashcam recording until everyone leaves the scene. The footage might capture conversations or additional details that could prove vital in your case.
Could a Dashcam Hurt My Case?
It's important to recognize that dashcams can be a double-edged sword. Depending on what the video shows, the footage can either support your claim or potentially implicate you in some way. Even if you firmly believe that another driver is solely at fault, the dashcam footage might reveal evidence that indicates you may bear more responsibility than you initially thought.
For instance, the dashcam recording could demonstrate that the other driver made an illegal left turn when the collision occurred. However, it might also capture audio of your child crying in the backseat. The defendant's attorney could argue that you were distracted by your child, hampering your ability to react swiftly and avoid the collision.
Moreover, dashcam footage may inadvertently capture you speeding, playing loud music, or discussing your fatigue levels, all of which could diminish your chances of receiving adequate compensation for your injuries and losses.
Before installing a dashcam in your vehicle, it's essential to understand that it records everything, regardless of fault. This realization should incentivize you to prioritize safe driving practices and make sound decisions behind the wheel.
Contact an Experienced Personal Injury Attorney for Help
After any accident where liability is disputed or when you're unsatisfied with the settlement offered, it's crucial to consult with a qualified personal injury lawyer. An experienced attorney will thoroughly review the evidence, identify the most effective legal strategies, and maximize your compensation by minimizing any potential liability. Call Fletcher Law for help.
As a general rule, refrain from sharing dashcam footage with insurance companies, law enforcement agencies, or other parties until you have consulted with your lawyer. However, keep in mind that if the existence of dashcam footage becomes known, it can be subpoenaed as evidence by the party defending against liability. In any case, a skilled attorney will guide you through the legal process based on the unique circumstances of your case.
Lastly, it's important to remain aware that the legality of dashcams can evolve, and specific regulations may change over time. Therefore, if you're considering installing a dashcam in your vehicle, it's advisable to seek guidance from a knowledgeable attorney to ensure compliance with current laws and regulations.