Is It Okay to Approach a Witness after an Accident?

If you’ve been injured by someone else’s negligence in a car accident – or any other kind of accident – a key component of your claim is the available evidence. Often, the strongest evidence comes from eyewitnesses at the scene, but you may not even know how to go about collecting this kind of evidence – or whether or not it is all right to approach an eyewitness and request a statement. A better understanding of how this works in the State of Georgia can make a significant difference in the proof and the outcome of your claim. 

The most important step you can take, however, to help ensure that you receive the compensation to which you are entitled is to consult with an experienced Georgia personal injury attorney. 

Yes, You Can Approach a Witness

The fact is that if there are eyewitnesses at the scene of the accident, you have the right to approach them and request that they provide you with a statement. The choice of whether or not they want to provide you with such a statement, however, is up to them. Often,  eyewitnesses are happy to share what they’ve seen. Further, if they are interviewed by an officer at the scene, they are very likely to provide statements. 

It is also not unusual that an eyewitness may approach you to share what he or she saw. One of the most important points about collecting eyewitness accounts is to record the witnesses’ contact information with their observations. If you aren’t able to gather eyewitness testimony and contact information yourself, it might be included in the police report – or someone at the scene may have collected it on your behalf.  

Even if You Think Your Case Is a Given

Even if you think your claim is very clear and that the insurance company is not going to impede its progress, it is still an excellent idea to have eyewitness testimony on your side. Insurance adjusters will attempt to minimize the payout on your claim and they will approach your claim as if it is merely business. The more evidence that you have to present about the circumstances and severity of the accident, the better chance you will have of being made whole for all of your losses.  

Do Not Delay 

The sooner you speak with an eyewitness – whether at the scene or after the fact – the better it will be for your claim, and the primary reasons for this include:

  • People’s memories fade, and the details are often the first to go.
  • People’s contact information can become obsolete, and their testimony can be lost to you.
  • By speaking with witnesses before the insurance company does, you can anchor their testimony, which will make it more difficult for them to change their testimony or mis-remember some of the facts later.  

Seek the Professional Legal Counsel of an Experienced Georgia Personal Injury Attorney Today

The seasoned personal injury attorneys atBanks, Stubbs & McFarland – proudly serving both Forsyth County and Cumming – dedicate their practice to helping clients like you recover their full range of damages  for all of their losses.  To learn more, please don’t wait tocontact or call us at 770-887-1209 today.

Jeffrey Roberts

Emily Roberts: Emily, a former corporate lawyer, demystifies the world of law with clear explanations of legal principles, case analyses, and insights into the legal profession. Her blog is a valuable resource for law students, legal professionals, and anyone interested in law.