The case being made by the victim of a motor vehicle accident gets strengthened following the presentation of good evidence. Witness statements can be part of that evidence. Ideally, the witness given his or her contact information at the scene of the accident. Then the victim’s lawyer can speak with that same witness over the phone, or in person.
Typical questions for a witness:
• Where were you standing/sitting at the time of the accident?
• At what point did you arrive at the sight of the collision?
• Did any person or object block your view of what was happening when the vehicles collided?
• What sounds did you hear at the time of the collision?
The above questions call for a clear and simple answer. Sometimes it is appropriate to ask a question that might have a less direct answer. For instance, the witness might be asked to share information on various aspects of the setting in which the accident took place. Was the sun creating a glare on various surfaces at that point in time? Was the sun shining into your car? Were you wearing sunglasses?
What was the air like at that time of day? Was it foggy? Was the air full of smoke from fires, as various homeowners burned the leaves that had been raked-up?
Do not ask the witness to speculate.
A case will not be made stronger by the presentation of speculation, even if the witness has speculated that the driver might have been texting. Only proof of texting, as shown by the figures on a cell phone bill can be acknowledged by the court.
It is OK to obtain an opinion, if the witness has seen an act that deviates greatly from the acceptable actions of the average driver. For instance, it could be that a speeding car had zoomed through a red light, almost hitting a pedestrian that had planned to cross the street.
In that case, the Injury Lawyer in Mississauga knows that the witness might be asked to give the approximate speed of the vehicle that had come close to hitting the pedestrian. This would be one instance in which the court would allow some degree of speculation. Outside of such instances, no question should ask the witness to speculate. The questioning of witnesses is meant to increase the number of gathered facts. For example, what was taking place at that particular intersection, before the reckless driver zoomed past?