The Burden of Proof in Your New York Car Accident Claim

Car Accident Lawyer

If the insurance company for the person who caused your injury does not make an acceptable settlement offer, your New York Car accident lawyer may have to take your case to trial. The burden of proof (the amount of proof you must provide for the jury to find in your favor) is lower in a civil case (like a car accident lawsuit) than it is in a criminal case.

Your New York Car Accident Attorney Must Show the “Fair Preponderance of the Credible Evidence”

You may have heard the phrase “beyond a reasonable doubt.” This is the burden of proof the prosecution must meet in a criminal trial. In your civil trial, though, your New York car accident attorney will only have to show the “fair preponderance of the credible evidence.”

What Does This Mean?

“Credible evidence” is the testimony or exhibits the jury finds worthy of belief. “Preponderance” means most of the evidence. It does not refer to the number of witnesses or exhibits, but to the quality of the evidence and how convincing it is. If the evidence your New York car accident lawyer presents to the jury seems to represent what actually happened, the jury should find in your favor. If neither side establishes a preponderance of evidence (i.e., both sides present cases that seem equally likely), the jury will be instructed to find against you.

Exceptions in Cases Involving Death or Amnesia

Some states have different rules regarding the burden of proof in cases involving wrongful death or amnesia. If your case involves wrongful death or amnesia, you should consult with an experienced local personal injury lawyer who will know the case law in your area and whether you must meet an evidentiary burden other than the “fair preponderance of the credible evidence.”

If you have been injured in a car accident due to the negligence or intentional act of another person, you may be eligible for financial recovery for your medical costs, lost wages, and pain and suffering. For a free evaluation of your case, please contact Gersowitz Libo & Korek, P.C. at (800) 529-9997 or fill out the form at the top of this page.

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