Understanding the Burden of Proof in a Car Accident Claim

“Burden of proof” is a term that many people have heard before, but not everyone knows what it means. It deals with the amount of evidence required by law to show that someone’s guilty in civil or criminal cases. When it comes to car accidents, the claimant must prove that someone else is at fault and liable for the damages. This is done through the help of an experienced San Diego car accident attorney. This is a necessary part of the claims process, and if you don’t satisfy the burden of proof, you won’t recover compensation.

The burden of proof refers to the amount of evidence required in a legal case to prove that someone is guilty or liable for an event. In car accident cases, the burden of proof falls on the claimant, who must provide evidence that another driver was at fault and legally liable for the accident. This can be done through the use of various forms of evidence, such as a police report, medical records, photos and videos of the accident scene, and witness statements. The burden of proof is particularly important in civil cases, where guilt is determined by the preponderance of evidence, meaning that it is more likely than not that someone is guilty. In criminal cases, the burden of proof is higher, and there must be no doubt about someone’s guilt. It is advisable to work with an experienced car accident attorney to help you satisfy the burden of proof and recover damages in your car accident case.


What’s the Burden of Proof?
The term refers to a legal standard everyone must satisfy when filing a car accident claim. When you’re alleging that someone else is at fault, you must have evidence corroborating your version of the events. You have to show that another driver is legally liable for the accident with the help of a personal injury attorney.


Understanding Negligence
Negligence” is a legal standard that deals with the level of recklessness that drivers exhibit when causing accidents. In many car accident claims, you have to prove that the at-fault driver was negligent, which is established through the following criteria:

  • The driver owes you a duty of care.
  • The driver breached their duty of care.
  • They failed to uphold their duty of care and caused the accident.
  • The accident is how you suffered injuries.

Keep in mind that negligence involves car accidents with serious injuries. The burden of proof becomes relevant because you must show that someone failed to act reasonably to prevent the accident. Different forms of evidence can prove that someone was negligent.


Injuries and Damages
Car accidents often cause severe and life-altering injuries, which require extensive medical care. In situations such as this, you must provide evidence of the details and extent of your injuries. You’ll need to produce medical records and statements from doctors or healthcare providers. You should also obtain visual evidence (photos and/or videos) of your injuries. Remember, injuries (both physical and psychological) are something that may develop several hours or even days or weeks later. Therefore, it’s critical that you keep a close eye on what you’re feeling following your accident.


Differences in Civil and Criminal Proof
Knowing the difference between criminal and civil cases is vital when it comes to the burden of proof. In criminal proceedings, there’s a much higher standard. There has to be absolutely no doubt about someone’s guilt. In civil cases, guilt is decided by the preponderance of evidence. In other words, the jury decides that it’s more than likely that someone’s guilty. These distinctions when it comes to the burden of proof is something that can be challenging to understand at times. Therefore, one of the best things that you can do is ensure that you have the help and support of a personal injury attorney who can help to walk you through what you need when it comes to fulfilling the type of burden of proof that you need to.


Types of Evidence
Many types of evidence exist that you can obtain to satisfy the burden of proof. Gathering evidence is also how you strengthen your case and gain leverage against the insurance companies. Here are the different types of documents you need for a car accident claim:

  • Police report
  • Medical records
  • Photos and/or videos of the accident scene
  • Witness statements
  • Information documenting any loss of income

Remember that filing a claim can be tricky when dealing with the burden of proof. However, knowing what kind of evidence you need makes everything easier. Furthermore, collecting evidence only increases your chances of recovering compensation.


You Need a Car Accident Attorney by Your Side
Here at HHJ Trial Attorney, our expert team knows how to strengthen your claim. We serve many other San Diego residents who also deal with insurance companies. Our job is to gather evidence and satisfy the burden of proof so that you can recover damages. Schedule an appointment with us today, and we can review your case immediately.


Testimonial from Peter, Satisfied Personal Injury Clients
Michael and his team were great to work with. Timely communication and updates. They made us feel comfortable by answering all of our questions and concerns. Highly recommend them.

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