Why Should I Take Photos After a Car Accident?
Car crashes happen frequently in West Virginia. In fact, Forbes reports that the average driver, over the course of a lifetime, gets involved in between three and four accidents. If you get into a crash, you should make it a priority to take photos of the crash scene.
Granted, taking photos may not be your immediate, natural response. However, if you do take photos, they will prove to be valuable to you at a later date as you pursue your auto accident claim.
Consider these benefits associated with accident scene photography:
- Photos help you to prove fault. Because West Virginia is an at-fault car insurance state, you must prove the fault of the other driver in order to recover compensation under that driver's liability insurance policy. If you can't prove fault, you can't seek damages. Photos help you to prove that the other driver caused the accident by highlighting the angles at which the vehicles collided, skid marks, positioning on the roadway, traffic signs and more.
- Photos prove damages. Not only do you need to prove fault in a West Virginia car accident insurance claim, but you also need to prove damages, too. Photos immediately following your accident help to document both injuries and property damage.
- Photo evidence is difficult to dispute. While your testimony or the testimonies of witnesses may be easy for an insurance adjuster to challenge, photo evidence is hard to dispute. Photos represent what actually happened, especially when the photos are time and date stamped.
Many people wonder whether it is illegal to take a picture of an accident. The short answer: No. Instead, it is encouraged. Just make sure that you move your car out of the way of traffic within a reasonable amount of time and follow any requests of law enforcement officers.
The photos that you take will be both for your own records and for the insurance company. However, even though you submit your own photos to the insurance company, don't be surprised if the auto insurance claims adjuster requests an auto accident photo inspection. This is simply a time when the adjuster will take pictures of all damages - typically focusing on your vehicle - for the insurance company's own records.
Our Charleston Motor Vehicle Accident Attorneys Are Ready to Help You
Taking photos of your accident is always a smart idea. However, if you are severely injured, taking photos may not be an option for you. When you cannot take photographs of the accident scene, vehicle damage, or your injuries, you should ask a friend or family member to do so. A lawyer could also send investigators to the scene and inspect what happened.
At Mani Ellis & Layne, PLLC, we will represent you throughout the process of filing your auto accident insurance claim and answer any questions you may have about how to recover the damages you are owed.
To receive your free consultation, please contact our law firm today. We are here to work hard for you in the aftermath of a crash.