Proving Liability in a Personal Injury Claim

In order to file a personal injury claim, there must be evidence of two things. One is that someone else acted negligently and is liable for damages and the second is that damages were suffered. The type of proof necessary will depend on the kind of case being pursued.

Types of Evidence Used to Prove Liability 

Although addressing damages is important, what’s especially critical is being able to prove that someone else was at fault for the accident and liable for the resultant damages. Without that, no compensation can be received. While a lawyer can put together evidence, you as the victim can also do your part to gather things that it may be more difficult for a lawyer to access, like photos of the accident right after it happened. 

In a traffic accident case, for example, someone else’s fault can be proved a variety of ways: 

  • the police report;
  • eyewitness statements;
  • photographs (red-light cameras, those taken personally); and
  • the damaged vehicles are just some examples of evidence that may be used.

If the case involves a dog bite, any previous complaints filed about the dog (such as prior bites or attacks) can be very helpful as evidence. So can statements from any witnesses.

However, since negligence doesn’t have to necessarily be proven in this type of case, just being able to establish someone is the owner of the dog may be enough. In Illinois, dog owners are liable for injuries the dog cause to others.

Get Help Establishing Liability and Damages

Along with proof of liability, it will also need to be shown that the person sustained physical and/or emotional harm. Damages may include medical costs, lost wages, pain and suffering, mental anguish and more.

In any type of personal injury claim—whether it stems from a collision at an intersection, an attack by a dog or another incident that causes injury—there are common parties that may be liable. Talking to an attorney can help in building a strong case.