How Attorneys May Rebut A Defendants Phony Account Of The Accident

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It is not uncommon for an attorney to assess a potential motor vehicle accident claim in which the individual who is hurt and wishes to go forward with a lawsuit tells one story of how the accident took place and the potential defendant in the case tells a completely contradictory story. Of course, in the defendant's version he or she is blameless and has no liability for the accident. This occurs regardless of whether the individual has insurance that would fully cover the range the settlement or verdict is likely to fall in. So the motive is never clear. It is up to the attorney who evaluates the case on behalf of the hurt individual to identify what evidence, if any, exists to invalidate the version of the incident told by the would-be defendant.

In this case a seventy five year old male pedestrian was struck while going across the street to return to his double-parked car. The potential defendant was driving a van when the accident happened. He maintained that the victim came out suddenly from the middle of two cars that were parked at the side of the road and that the man in fact ran into the car leading to damage to the its side. He sustained a fracture to his shoulder, a fracture to his collarbone, and a fracture to his ankle. He needed screws and a metal plate inserted into his ankle. An dynamic man prior to the accident his life changed greatly after.

The law firm that represented the pedestrian asked that the defense produce evidence of the damage to the side of the van professed by the driver. No such evidence was ever offered by the defendant. The damage that plainly did take place to her van was a cracked windshield. Notwithstanding the inconsistency in the drivers account of the accident and the severity of the injuries to the pedestrian the drivers insurance company refused to settle the pedestrians claim. The law firm that handled this case took it to trial and attained a verdict of $475,000 on behalf of the victim.

The above displays how hard defendants will try to avoid responsibility for an accident, even when they have plenty of insurance to cover them. From time to time they just look at the facts from a point of view that absolves them of fault. At times they recall the accident in a different way from how it really happened. Sometimes they just plain lie.

To complicate things, insurance company adjusters seem all to ready to take their insureds version of the accident at face value and to completely discount the injured victims account of the accident. Statistically, this reasonable from a business point of view especially if there are no witnesses. Deny enough claims and some of them will settle for nuisance value. Of those that do not, if the defense wins half those claims at trial the insurance companies will save millions each year.

Choosing whether to retain an accident reconstruction expert for a case is a matter of judgment. For some circumstances, it is completely important such as when not using an expert would make it extremely difficult for the jury to comprehend how the accident happened. For many situations it is advisable to not underestimate the jury. Juries are generally very intelligent and have excellent common sense. Offer the evidence to them in a way that helps them connect it to their own experience and they will cut through the drivers version.
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