If you or somebody you care about has been injured in a vehicle accident caused by the careless with negligent actions of another driver, you will likely be entitled to various types of compensation. This can include coverage of medical bills, lost income, property damage expenses, pain and suffering damages, and more. However, recovering this compensation can be challenging, particularly if the insurance carriers put up a fight. It may be necessary for you or your attorney to work with an expert witness to help prove the merits of your case. Here we want to discuss exactly what an expert witness is in a car accident case in California.
What Is an Expert Witness?
When most people hear about expert witnesses, they think about what they see on TV shows or movies. In general, these dramas only portray expert witnesses coming in to handle high profile cases. The reality is that expert witnesses are used in all manners of criminal and civil court cases. This includes car accident cases.
An expert witness is a person that comes in to provide information that lies outside of the realm of “general knowledge” to those involved in the case, including insurance carriers, attorneys, judges, and jury members. For car accident cases, expert witnesses will typically be brought in to help determine what caused the crash so that liability can be assigned.
What Types of Expert Witnesses Will Be Beneficial for a Car Accident Case?
There may be various types of expert witnesses that can be brought in in the aftermath of the car accident case in California. In some cases, the following types of expert witnesses may be brought in to help determine what happened to cause the crash:
An accident reconstructionist
Highway safety experts
Engineering and architectural experts
Vehicle safety experts
Product defect experts
Expert witnesses may also be used to help determine the total compensation that should be awarded to an accident victim. This will be the case if there is a dispute over understanding whether or not the total damages requested are reasonable and accurate. Some of the witnesses brought in to help in these cases can include:
Economic and financial experts
Mental health experts
Expert Witnesses May Never Actually Go to Court
When you have seen expert witnesses testify on TV or in the movies, it was likely they were doing so inside of a courtroom. However, the vast majority of car accident cases in California never reach a courtroom at all. Most of these claims are settled between negotiations with insurance carriers or between negotiations with attorneys after a lawsuit has been filed. Even if the case does not go to trial, expert witnesses can still provide invaluable testimony that could push both sides towards a settlement.
Accident Victims Need To Work With an Attorney
California car accident cases can become incredibly complicated. In most cases, car accident victims lack the resources necessary to conduct a complete investigation into their own claim. However, when a crash victim works with an Ontario car accident lawyer, the attorney can use the resources they have to fully investigate the case, work with expert witnesses, and help determine liability.