Car accidents cost $871 billion annually in the United States. The costs involved in car accidents are high because of the ensuing medical bills, pain and suffering, loss of wages, and mental health issues that the victims go through. There are several critical legal elements to evaluate in a car accident.
If your personal injury case goes to trial, the jury and the judge need to determine who is liable and what are the potential damages that the victim has suffered. This routinely requires testimony from expert witnesses.
Importance of an Expert Witness in a Personal Injury Case
Car accident injury claims are dependent on the question of fault. Generally, victims are entitled to get financial compensation from at-fault parties whose negligence caused the collision. This is why the party claiming compensation is required to prove that the other party was negligent, reckless, or at fault for the accident.
Vehicle accidents are usually technical in nature. They don’t just involve automobiles, but the multibillion-dollar road engineering project as well. An accident doesn’t always occur because the other driver was reckless. It may also occur because of asphalt conditions and the impact of weather.
Experts can use mathematics and other tools at their disposal to calculate the tire skid marks, weather conditions, and other factors for placing blame. They may testify as to what caused the crash and the circumstances leading up to it. They can help the court and parties understand what led to the crash in doing so.
Expert witnesses can be used for offering testimony about the damage value. For instance, if you claim $100,000 in damages, the court would need to know whether the amount is accurate and reasonable.
Expert Witnesses are Useful Even When the Case Doesn’t Go to Court
Expert consultants can help in preparing a strong case, which can then be used for negotiating with the insurance company. Experts provide credible reports, opinions, and other evidence which may give you the necessary leverage required. These kinds of professionals can also prove to be useful in determining the amount of compensation you can claim against the defendant.
It’s fundamental to remember that insurance companies are not on your side, even if they are your carrier. They have already retained hundreds of attorneys to avoid paying a lot in settling claims. Insurers will find unique ways of challenging your claim. They will challenge the way the accident occurred, and the extent of damages caused. You can bolster your claim by using an expert witness and make it difficult for the insurance company to dispute in good faith.
The majority of insurance companies change their perspective on settling the claim once they learn the victim has hired a credible expert witness.
Common Types of Expert Witnesses in a Vehicle Accident Claims
An expert witness is anyone qualified by skill, knowledge, training, experience, or education as per the Federal Rules of Evidence Rule 702. Expert witnesses are generally experienced in a particular field and can provide critical insights.
These are a few common types of experts used in car accident claims in Pennsylvania:
- Accident Reconstructionist
You may assume that there is no way to know what exactly happened, especially without credible eyewitness testimony and video footage. However, highly trained accident reconstructionist uses a combination of technology and their expertise in determining the ways in which a particular crash may have happened. Often, they are able to establish a proper chain of events that may help in establishing the defendant’s fault.
- Highway Safety Experts
It is a full-time job keeping up with mountains of new traffic data published every year. Highway safety experts are highly educated professionals that understand how drivers behave typically, how crashes occur, and how different external conditions can affect a collision.
You can seek both economic and non-economic damages through personal injury law. Diminished quality of life, lost wages, medical bills, and the impact of a particular injury in earning a living among other factors are taken into account for determining the settlement worth. Economists are able to put a precise dollar amount on the extent of damages.
- Medical Experts
Medical experts are usually closely related to malpractice claims. However, they can be used in car accident claims to determine the severity and extent of physical and mental injury. They can offer a credible opinion on how a specific injury occurred and whether the car accident caused the injury or not.
- Mental Health Experts
Mental health experts can help quantify damages arising out of emotional distress, pain and suffering, and loss of enjoyment of life. These experts are also helpful in persuading a jury that the victim’s claims are legitimate regarding suffering and distress.
- Engineering Experts
Car accidents can be technical. Engineers can explain factors regarding roadway design, vehicle design, and construction of property among others that may have resulted in the accident.
Speak to a Skilled and Knowledgeable Pittsburgh Car Accident Attorney Regarding Your Claim
If you or a loved one was recently involved in a car accident, chances are that your life may have dramatically changed. You may be looking at a mountain of medical debt, bills, loss of income, and continued pain and suffering.
The experienced auto accident lawyers at Caroselli, Beachler & Coleman, LLC can help you obtain the maximum compensation you are entitled to, which may involve the use of expert witnesses depending on the circumstances of your case. Call us at 866-466-5789 or fill out our online form to set up a free consultation.