Neutral witnesses can be essential in car accident cases. When someone who was not involved in the crash and has no interest in the outcome of the case managed to see what happened, their testimony has the potential to make or break your claim. It is a good idea to speak to witnesses at the scene if possible, while their memory is fresh. There are a few things to keep in mind when approaching people who may have seen your accident. An attorney will be able to help with identifying and contacting witnesses if needed, so it is a good idea to call one as soon as possible if you have been in a motor vehicle accident.
What Should I Consider When Approaching Witnesses?
After a wreck, your emotions may be running high. You may be tempted to race after any potential witnesses immediately, but there are a few things to consider, such as:
- Safety – Make sure you can safely reach the witness. Do not run into the street to chase someone down, and make sure that you stand in a safe location away from traffic to speak to them. Use appropriate caution when approaching people you do not know.
- Priority – If you are injured, getting immediate medical care is the top priority. Calling the police to file an accident report is a high priority as well. Do not become so caught up trying to track down and question every witness yourself.
- Proximity – Make sure that you stay with the vehicles and do not leave the accident scene trying to locate a potential witness. Your attorney and the police may be able to help locate witnesses who saw the accident from another location, such as inside a nearby building.
Making contact with witnesses yourself immediately can be helpful, but it is important to be safe about doing so.
What Information Should I Get From Witnesses?
If you are able to safely speak with witnesses right after the crash, the most important thing is to get their contact information. The greatest independent witness in the world cannot help you later if you have no way to reach him after he leaves. From there, it can be good to have the witness give a brief statement describing what he saw happen. Your attorney will likely have more specific questions for the witness later, depending on the facts of your case.
Call a Wisconsin Car Accident Lawyer
If you have been hurt in a car accident, Herrling Clark Law Firm Ltd. may be able to help you recover compensation. Our Appleton car accident attorneys are skilled in the art of locating and interviewing potential witnesses and then using their testimony to prove cases. Call 920-739-7366 for a free consultation.