Circumstantial Evidence

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What is Circumstantial Evidence?

When direct evidence is missing or unavailable, circumstantial evidence allows us to build a case that can persuade a reasonable person. Direct evidence cannot be obtained in many disputes, but there are numerous clues that an attorney can piece together to establish a chain of events and responsibility for an outcome.

What Are the Differences Between Circumstantial Evidence and Direct Evidence?

Many different types of evidence are used in personal injury cases, and some are considered to be more reliable than others. One of the most significant distinctions is between direct and circumstantial evidence:

  • Direct Evidence includes firsthand eyewitness accounts of what occurred. For example, direct evidence is when someone witnesses the accident and can describe it. Video recordings of an accident can also be considered direct evidence if they clearly show everything that occurred.
  • Circumstantial Evidence is evidence that implies what happened without directly demonstrating it.

Circumstantial evidence is admissible in court and can be extremely useful. It does not, however, prove anything on its own. 

It is up to the jury to make a logical inference or come to their own conclusion about what occurred. Circumstantial evidence may or may not be interpreted in the same way that you would interpret it. 

In a Personal Injury Case, What Is an Example of Circumstantial Evidence?

Assume you are hit by a car that leaves the accident. You were able to write down the license plate number of the car before it fled, and the police were able to locate the car and its owner. The driver of the car, on the other hand, claims they were never at the scene of the accident, but there is circumstantial evidence to support your story because their car appears to be newly damaged.

You could subpoena cell phone records from the driver in question if you have a good lawyer. If their GPS shows that they were at the accident scene, it’s clear that they’re lying about what happened.

None of these circumstantial evidence pieces prove what happened on their own. However, when taken together, they form a picture. Unless the driver has a very good explanation for every piece of evidence, a jury is likely to find them at fault for the accident.

How Strong Is Circumstantial Evidence?

Circumstantial evidence can be extremely powerful, and it is used to win cases every day, including car accidents, nursing home abuse cases, and slip and fall accidents. In general, a personal injury attorney would prefer to find someone who actually witnessed everything that occurred, but this isn’t always possible. Circumstantial evidence is frequently used to save the day and persuade the jury of what happened.

Contact a Personal Injury Lawyer

If you were involved in any type of accident that was caused by someone else’s negligence, contact a personal injury lawyer for legal help.

It’s nearly impossible to win a personal injury case on your own. You’ll need the help of an attorney who has experience handling similar cases. They will be able to tell you if the circumstantial evidence surrounding your case is going to be enough to win.

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