While you are receiving your medical treatment and focusing on your recovery, your attorney will be actively working on proving your personal injury claim. A prompt and thorough fact and evidence gathering investigation will greatly increase your chances of success. The art of proving a claim for personal injury is performed with the following goal in mind: successfully winning your case and obtaining the maximum monetary compensation available under California law.
Proving Your Personal Injury Case Under California Law
There are many factors at work in proving and winning your case, and a good personal injury attorney will take all factors into account. An experienced attorney will also consider that emotions can play a big factor. If certain facts in your case would appeal to the sympathy of a judge or jury, your attorney will want to emphasize those facts in conjunction with proving your case.
Days After an Accident
Proving your personal injury case begins immediately after an accident or incident. During the initial hours and days after an accident, your personal injury attorney will collect evidence that could disappear with time if it is not collected right away. This is referred to by attorneys as preserving evidence.
There are many types of critical evidence that will need to be collected as part of the fact-gathering investigation in your case. The process of gathering evidence is essential to building a strong case and proving your claim for financial damages and accountability.
The police report, such as a Traffic Collision Report or Arrest Report, is a valuable tool in assessing the merits of your legal matter and building your case. The police report itself, which constitutes hearsay evidence, is not admissible in court and therefore not dispositive on issues of liability, yet it is still a good indicator of what adverse parties are likely to testify when called as witnesses in a court of law.
Often the key to successfully proving and winning a personal injury claim is interviewing witnesses who have first-hand knowledge of facts supporting your claim. Witness statements can both facilitate a favorable settlement and build a solid case in the event that your case goes to trial before a jury.
Should your case proceed to a lawsuit stage, then your attorney will conduct what is known as formal discovery. The process of lawsuit discovery refers to various legal mechanisms under California law that your injury attorney uses to gather facts and evidence in support of your case.
If your claim for damages is not settled after discovery or through alternative dispute resolution such as mediation, then it will proceed to trial before a jury. Proper trial preparation is key to ensuring that the evidence in support of your case will be usable at trial to help you prove your case.