Imagine being the victim in an injury accident, only to have the responsible party’s insurance company refuse to fairly compensate you for your injuries. While you may think that this can’t happen to you, it is surprisingly common. In fact, the goal of the insurance company is to pay out as little as possible.
The Role of a Witness
In order to persuade a jury to rule in your favor, witnesses are often called to testify. A key witness will provide valuable information in court. Both the plaintiff and the defendant will have the opportunity to ask the witness questions regarding the case. His or her testimony may help you get awarded a higher compensation.
Types of Witnesses
Depending on the facts surrounding your personal injury case, your lawyer may choose to call in one or more witnesses. There are two main types of witnesses.
- Lay Witness
A lay witness is simply an individual who can report a personal account of what happened. The witness will relay their story of what happened before, during and after the incident.
- Expert Witness
An expert witness has specialized credentials in a specific field. This type of witness was not present during the accident, but rather called in by the one of the parties for their expert opinion about certain aspects of the case.
Common Examples of Expert Witnesses
Every personal injury case is different, so it’s up to your attorney to determine which expert witnesses will provide the most valuable testimony. A few of the most popular expert witnesses include:
- Medical Professionals
Your lawyer may rely on the expertise of medical professionals to testify in your favor. A doctor may be asked to explain details about your type of injury, including the extent of the damage, limitations you may have, and future prognosis.
- Car Accident Reconstruction Expert
If you were injured in a car accident, an accident reconstruction expert may be called in to recreate the scene of the accident. The witness may create reports about vehicle speed, road conditions and vehicle safety. The goal is to give the jury a clear understanding of what caused the accident.
- Vocational Rehabilitation Specialist
A vocational rehabilitation specialist will explain how your injuries are impacting your ability to properly perform in your job. If you’re unable to continue in your current position, their testimony will explain why.
- Medical Examiner
If the accident resulted in a wrongful death, a medical examiner will determine the cause of death and present their findings in court.
Any personal injury case that goes to court will greatly benefit from both lay witness and expert witness testimonies. Your personal injury attorney will help secure the most reliable and accurate witnesses for your case.