Credible Witness in a Car Accident: What Are the Criteria?

If you have been injured in a car accident in Carrollton, Georgia, the credibility of an observer helps your compensation claim. However, even when eyewitnesses were present at the accident scene and have an accurate account of what transpired, the courts may still reject their testimony.

The defendant’s insurance company lawyers are there to ensure that their client is absolved of any liability or responsibility. So, they will do what they can to convince the court not to take your observer seriously. However, an experienced personal injury lawyer knows this and will help you prove your eyewitness’ credibility.

Shouldn’t the testimony of an eyewitness be enough to solidify the case? You may wonder. This article discusses what makes someone a credible observer. Contact the Law Office of John B. Jackson if you or a loved one suffer injuries.

What Makes a Witness Credible?

The first thing the defendant attorneys in a car accident compensation case will be interested in is the credibility of your observer’s testimony and its accuracy. If they discover that your eyewitness’ account of the event is water-tight, there are other strategies in their arsenal that they can use to discredit your witness. To “defeat” the tactics of the defense, a car accident observer should meet the conditions below.

Consistent Testimony

In the eyes of the law, there is a close link between consistency and credibility of observer testimony. For example, an eyewitness may have witnessed the incident and repeatedly given an unswerving narration, only to fumble during the court proceeding. This lapse can happen because the observers may not expect the level of antagonization they will face in the hands of the defendant’s team.

The defendant’s lawyer, through experience, plans the cross-examination in a way that will throw your eyewitness off balance. Once the eyewitness gives contradicting statements, their credibility suffers a big blow. It is the job of a good car accident lawyer to help the observer triumph over the process.

Absence of Bias

It is possible that the eyewitness is a relative to an injured person in the accident, and the plaintiff’s lawyer may not be aware of it. If this is the case, and the defendant’s lawyer knows about it, it is enough reason to dilute the observer’s credibility. The possible bias of an eyewitness can go beyond a family relationship. The eyewitness must not be closely connected to any victim to remain credible.

Drug and Alcohol-Free at the Time of Accident

Drugs and alcohol can tamper with the clarity of the human mind. If the observer had used drugs or alcohol a significant while before the accident occurred or while it was in progress, it could make their account less believable. On the other hand, if the defendant’s lawyer can prove that the observer was under the influence of drugs or alcohol around the time of the incident, the pendulum can swing in their favor.

Free of Mental Health Challenges

The testimony of an observer who has a mental health challenge is admissible in court but may not be sufficiently convincing. There is a concern about the integrity of the testimony of a mentally challenged person. The defendant’s lawyer can convince the court that the mental condition may have distorted the testimony of such observers. If your lawyer can help it, an individual who has an existing mental challenge should not be at the top of the list of eyewitnesses.

What Is the Role of a Personal Injury Attorney?

There is a possibility that negotiations with the at-fault party may fail, and a satisfactory resolution will depend on litigation, where you need to call witnesses. Therefore, a personal injury attorney should know the reasons that could lead to an eyewitness losing credibility and take steps to avoid them.

Your attorney should screen witnesses to determine how fit they are to testify. They should properly interview eyewitnesses, coach them on what to say, and brief them on what to expect in the courtroom.

Contact the Law Office of John B. Jackson for Car Accident Compensation

Suppose you have been injured in a car accident in Carrollton. In that case, the legal team at the Law Office of John B. Jackson have the expertise and wealth of experience to help you get compensated. You need an attorney who can reason like the defendant’s lawyers and always be ahead.

We fully appreciate the role of a credible witness in getting compensation, and we will ensure that their testimony is water-tight. Contact us today to learn more about our services and for a free case review.