Being in a car accident is upsetting regardless of whose fault it is. But if you are confident that the accident is the fault of another driver in Vanderburgh County, you should remember these important tips:
#1 Use the Police Report to Your Advantage
Police usually will show up at an accident scene, especially if there are injuries. If an officer did respond, he probably made a police report about the incident. Many reports will include the officer’s opinion on fault. The report could contain details about objective evidence at the scene, and possible police analysis of the evidence.
For instance, the police report might mention that the other party had been speeding; this was determined by the length of skid marks left on the road. The police report in Vanderburgh County also will state if the other party was cited for a traffic violation. Further, if alcohol was involved in the crash, this will be noted in the report.
You should talk to the administrative staff at the police station that responded to your accident to obtain a copy of the police report. Even if the police did not show up at the accident, the police may do an investigation later on and file a report at that time.
For most accidents, it is highly recommended to call the police and have a police report filed. The police report is usually one of the strongest pieces of evidence to establish liability.
#2 Review Evidence at Scene
There often is extensive physical evidence at the accident scene that can be more valuable than the recollections of you, the other party, and possible witnesses. Clearly, a major source of evidence is the damage to your and the other vehicle.
While you are probably upset after the crash, if you are able, take cell phone photos of both vehicles. Take several up close and wide angle photos of both vehicles. Also take pictures of how the cars are positioned in the intersection or roadway.
Location of the car damage can make a big difference in assigning blame. For instance, if your car has extensive rear end damage and the other car has a smashed in front bumper, it is fairly clear that you were rear ended. In nearly all cases, this type of accident is the fault of the rear driver.
Or, if there is major front end damage to one car and major front end damage on the right side of the other, a left turn accident probably occurred.
Records from the towing company and from the auto body shop also can help to clarify fault in the accident.
Also, if any witnesses were at the scene, you should ask them to jot down an accident description. They also should give you their contact information, including email and phone number.
There are some accidents in Vanderburgh County that may be the fault of both drivers. In that case, each person’s insurance company may end up paying to repair the vehicle of their client.