When pursuing a personal injury case, the strength of your evidence is critical. The evidence determines whether you can win your case and how much compensation you can get. Below is an overview of the various forms of evidence you may need during your case.
Demonstrative evidence includes things that you use to show or illustrate issues during a trial. Examples of demonstrative evidence include graphs, physical objects, demonstrations, and blowups, among others. Demonstrative evidence does not originate from the scene of the accident. Thus, demonstrative evidence is more of an 'aid' than evidence.
For example, if an accident occurred in the middle of nowhere without witnesses, you can use accident reconstruction to prove the defendant's liability. In such a case, the accident reconstruction experts might create a mockup video of the accident. In this case, the accident reconstruction video is demonstrative evidence.
Real evidence are things that were actually at the scene of the accident. Examples of real evidence include a piece of torn clothing from an accident scene, a cellphone that got smashed during an auto crash, or a pair of shoes you were wearing when you slipped and fell. Real evidence is usually referred to as physical evidence. Real evidence is rarely challenged as long as it is clear that the evidence was at the scene of the accident.
As the name suggests, documentary evidence includes documents produced to prove or disapprove issues during trial. Examples of documentary evidence include employment letters, medical bills, salary stubs, and contract documents, among others. A typical personal injury case involves numerous pages of documentary evidence. Most documentary evidence is usually produced in a process known as discovery, a process where each party investigates the facts of the case and obtains information from the opposing party.
Testimonial evidence comes from witnesses. When a witness stands to describe what they saw during an accident, the person is presenting testimonial evidence. Note that testimonial evidence doesn't have to be oral; witnesses are also allowed to provide written testimonies. Defendants usually challenge the accuracy and authenticity of testimonial evidence. This makes sense since human memory is fickle, memory can be distorted, and people don't always remember everything they see.
Expect the defendant to do everything possible to discredit or diminish the value of your evidence. An experienced personal injury lawyer can help your evidence stand out in court and win your case.