Dashboard-mounted cameras, often referred to as dashcams, are becoming more and more common. People usually have these in their vehicles to record a possible accident. If the footage meets evidentiary requirements, it might be admissible in court.
Dashcam footage may be admissible in court as evidence in a car accident case as long as it meets strict evidentiary requirements. Generally, if the footage has not been altered, accurately depicts the accident or other important details, and is relevant to your claims, it may be admitted into evidence. Talk to your attorney to make sure your dashcam footage meets the criteria for admissibility. Your footage must be authenticated and not violate any other evidentiary rules, such as rules against hearsay. The footage might be useful when establishing crucial details about the accident, such as the location, weather conditions, and people present. In some cases, dashcams capture the entire accident on video. These videos may be used to prove things like negligence or other important factors like the defendant’s hostility.
If you have dashcam footage from a crash, call our Georgia car accident attorneys at (844) 876-4357 and schedule a free review of your case at Howe Law.
Are Dashcams Admissible in Georgia Car Accident Cases?
Dashcams are small, dashboard-mounted cameras that often record everything on the road. While many of these cameras are placed up front on the dashboard and record everything in front of the vehicle, some people place them on the rear of their cars to record everything behind them.
Dashcams might record many important details in the event of a crash. Often, drivers want to use these videos as evidence in a car accident case. As long as no rules of admissibility are violated, dashcam footage is generally acceptable evidence and may be admissible.
Dashcam footage should meet certain criteria to be considered admissible. First, the footage should be unaltered. You cannot submit bits and pieces of dashcam footage highlighting everything the defendant did wrong while deleting anything that might make you look bad. It is all or nothing.
Checking to See if You Can Use Dashcam Videos as Evidence in a Car Accident Case in Georgia
The first thing our Alpharetta car accident lawyers can help you with is determining if your dashcam footage meets the strict evidentiary requirements imposed by the court. These rules are simple in some ways but highly complex in others. To put it simply, all relevant evidence may be admissible. What’s complicated is the numerous rules that might exclude your evidence if they are violated.
One important evidentiary rule pertains to the authentication of evidence. We must be able to certify that your evidence is what it purports to be and that it is trustworthy. Authenticating dashcam footage usually involves showing that the footage came from your dashcam at the time of the accident. We must also show that the video is unaltered and bits of footage are not omitted or deleted.
The videos must also be relevant. Relevancy does not mean your videos must prove for certain that the defendant is liable for the crash. Relevancy means that the evidence tends to prove the issue of liability one way or the other. Relevant evidence might be a small piece of the puzzle or the lynchpin of your whole case. Even if the dashcam video proves one small detail about the defendant’s negligence, it may be admissible.
Dashcam video should accurately depict the accident to be relevant. This might be an issue if the camera was blocked or fell from the dashboard in the collision. A dashcam video of your car’s floor is irrelevant to your case. However, many dashcams pick up audio, and even footage of the floor might be relevant if it contains audio of the defendant admitting fault.
Why Dashcam Footage is Useful in Georgia Car Accident Cases
Ideally, your dashcam might record the entire accident. The video footage might depict the driver’s vehicle crashing into yours, and their negligent behavior might be on video. For example, the video might show the defendant speeding, making reckless turns, or committing other traffic violations.
Even if the dashcam does not record the entire accident, it might record important details that the defendant disputes or help you prove your claims. For example, suppose you claim the defendant T-boned you in an intersection because they ran a red light, but the defendant claims that is impossible because the accident did not happen at an intersection. Your dashcam footage might not show the defendant crashing into you (perhaps they hit you from behind), but it might clearly show you going through an intersection before being hit.
Other details and the aftermath of the accident might be on camera. For example, suppose you were hit from behind, but you have a front-facing dashcam, so the accident was not caught on video. Even though you might not have footage of the accident, you might have footage of you moving your car to a safe spot along the road. The other driver might have walked in front of the camera at some point, creating a video record of their presence at the accident scene. Details about the weather and road conditions might also be recorded.
What You Might Prove Using Dashcam Footage as Evidence in a Georgia Car Accident Case
Several key details might be proven or at least implicated by our dashcam footage. Perhaps the biggest issue we hope your dashcam footage can shed light on is who caused the accident. Did your dashcam capture the defendant on camera? Even if the crash itself is not on the video, the defendant might have exited their vehicle and stepped into view of the camera. We can definitively place the defendant at the accident scene with this footage.
Your dashcam might also record the defendant’s behavior during and after the accident. Was the defendant unreasonably hostile? Maybe they were slurring their speech, indicating intoxication. These and more details might change the course of your case.
Call Our Georgia Car Accident Lawyers About Using Dashcam Footage in Your Case
Call our Atlanta car accident lawyers at (844) 876-4357 and schedule a free review of your case and your dashcam footage from a crash at Howe Law.