If your loved one has sustained a brain injury caused by the careless or negligent actions of another individual, company, or entity in California, the only way to recover compensation is to prove that the other party’s fault caused the injuries.
Proving Negligence in a Brain Injury Case Means Gathering Evidence
Brain injury lawyers know that proving liability is the key to success in every case. At Walkup, Melodia, Kelly & Schoenberger, our team members are skilled at proving fault. We fully investigate every claim looking to gather physical evidence, witness statements, information in the public domain, video footage of the injury-producing event, and reports generated by first responders. Among the items that our lawyers look to find are:
- Photographs and videos showing the location and circumstances of the brain injury.
- Names and contact information of eyewitnesses so they can be contacted for statements.
- Accident, police fire department, and ambulance reports filled out at the scene or shortly thereafter
- Video surveillance taken from nearby cameras on homes or businesses.
Where a vehicle accident leads to a brain injury our San Francisco brain injury team will locate and sometimes buy the wreckage to evaluate the performance of airbags, seat belts, and other vehicle components intended to protect drivers and passengers. We will want to download the “black box” or EDR ( event data recorder ) for critical information on the vehicle’s speed, braking, turning, and performance during any crash. We will evaluate mobile phone data to look for distracted driving; explore the at-fault driver’s driving history; assess the potential of a vehicle defect, or trucking company safety failure.
In cases involving other types of accidents, such as premises liability incidents, workplace accidents, or medical negligence, various other types of evidence may be available and necessary to build a strong claim. For this reason, it is vital that you work with a law firm that has experience handling cases similar to yours. You don’t want your attorney ‘learning on the job’.
Comparative Negligence and a Brain Injury Claim
A common tactic used by insurance carriers and at-fault parties is to try and shift some or all of the blame onto the injured victim to limit how much money they pay. California operates under a “pure comparative negligence” system. This means that injured victims can recover compensation if they are partially at fault for the incident, while their total amount of compensation will be reduced by their percentage of fault.
For this reason, it is critical to be honest with and collaborate with an attorney who can fully investigate the situation and push back against any accusations of shared fault in order to maximize the compensation their client receives for their injury and other expenses.