How an Injured Driver Used a Police Report to Contradict the Defendant’s Affidavit Statements and Strengthen His Own Case
If you’ve heard people discuss the circumstances of a person injured in an auto accident, you’ve probably heard the advice that the injured driver/passenger/pedestrian should call an experienced New York City injury attorney right away. You may have heard this exhortation in a television or radio commercial or you could’ve read that advice in this blog. This advice comes up so frequently because it’s generally solid advice and it’s really important if your injury incident eventually requires you to take legal action. That’s because, while this is hopefully your first time dealing with a personal injury legal situation, it is definitely not your skilled injury attorney’s first. Your attorney knows what steps to take and knows what to do immediately
Why do these things matter so much? Here’s a recent real-life case that provides a useful example. M.O. was operating his vehicle in Manhattan when he slowed to make a right-hand turn. The vehicle behind him didn’t slow down fast enough and rear-ended M.O. M.O. suffered substantial injuries in the accident.
Would you know who to sue if you were M.O.? You might know, on your own, that you can bring a legal action against the rear driver. However, your skilled attorney can help you “dig deeper.” For example, if the owner of the rear vehicle was someone other than the rear driver, then the law may allow you to sue both the driver and the vehicle owner. Furthermore, if the driver was engaged in some activity advancing the interests of his employer, you may be able to include the employer as a defendant in your case.
The more viable defendants are under the law, the better your chances often will be of obtaining a full and fair recovery. In M.O.’s case, he was able to sue two men: the driver who rear-ended him and the owner of the vehicle.
Your legal counsel can also provide essential assistance in getting all of the information and evidence you need for your case. Sometimes, people make statements at the scene of the accident that differ with what they claim later, say, during a deposition. By getting all of the information and documentation from the accident scene, you may be better equipped to establish inconsistencies in the defense’s assertions, which may help further strengthen your case.
That’s what happened for M.O. In presenting his case, his evidence included the police accident report. As part of that report, the rear driver made a statement to police indicating that M.O. slowed down and that he (the rear driver) was “unable to stop on time.” This evidence was very important to the success of M.O.’s case, particularly in the success of his motion for summary judgment, which allowed him to avoid a full trial on liability. The defense’s opposition relied heavily upon the affidavit the rear driver signed, which contradicted what the rear driver allegedly said to the police at the time of the accident. However, the defense’s evidence lacked was proof in which the rear driver denied making the alleged statement to police or disputed the accuracy of what the police asserted that he said. Without that evidence, the police report was simply too powerful, which allowed the injured driver to win his summary judgment request.
Sometimes, success in your auto accident injury case can rest heavily upon knowing what to do and being able to get started without delay. To get the knowledgeable representation you need, retain the skilled Queens injury attorneys at Newman, Anzalone & Newman. We have been aiding people hurt in auto accidents for 40 years to ensure they get the fair compensation they need. To put us to work for you, schedule a free consultation with one of our highly qualified attorneys. Contact us toll-free at 877-754-3099 or through our website.