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The Importance of a Traffic Crash Report and Traffic Conviction in a Personal Injury Car Accident Case

In order to get the best payout for your car accident injury claims, one of the first things your personal injury attorney is going to look for is the traffic crash report.  If you've been hurt in a car accident, then it is important to call the police to the scene of the accident and also an ambulance, if necessary.  The police will interview all persons involved in the accident and any witnesses and they will attempt to reconstruct the accident and document their findings in what is called a "Traffic Crash Report."  The Traffic Crash Report is important to your personal injury case for a number of reasons.

The two main issues in any personal injury case are (1) liability, and (2) damages.  Most car accident lawsuits in Ohio are brought under the law of negligence.  In order to prove negligence in Ohio you must prove that the other driver breached their duty of care owed to you and that as a direct and proximate result of the other driver's breach, you suffered injury.  See Menifee v. Ohio Welding Products, Inc., 15 Ohio St.3d 75, 77 (1984).  One easy way to prove negligence is if the at-fault driver was cited for a traffic violation by the police in causing the accident.  Then if that person pleads guilty to the traffic violation and is convicted in Court, then you have essentially already proven that they were negligent in causing the car accident in your later civil case against them.  At that point all you have to do is prove the level and extent of your monetary daamges.  

An At-Fault Citation At the Scene Of The Accident Helps Your Personal Injury Case

If you're involved in a car accident that causes you injury, then it should be your goal to get the police to document the other driver as being at fault for the accident in their Traffic Crash Report (if in fact it was the other driver that caused the accident).  This documentation will help you streamline and speed up your personal injury case later down the line.  The biggest mistake you can make when you are at the scene of a car accident where you are injured is to try to be nice and not call the police.  In many cases if you have medical payment coverage on your own insurance policy you will need to get a Traffic Crash Report in order to enhance your ability to get your medical bills paid for by insurance.  Otherwise, if you did not think that the accident was serious enough to call the police to then it is unlikely that a year or two down the line a jury will think it was serious enough to grant you a large damages award for your personal injuries.  

If you've been hurt in a car accident in the Central Ohio area, then call an attorney at Harris & Engler to talk about your case.