Are you in the process of filing a personal injury claim? Are you wondering what type of witnesses and how many you may use to support your personal injury case in court? Then, here’s what you should know.
There are two types of witnesses in a personal injury claim:
A lay witness is one who has first-hand knowledge about matters that are relevant to your personal injury case but does not have expertise related to such matters. This type of witness can only testify about things they have observed. Therefore, anything a lay witness contributes to your case must be strictly based on personal knowledge and experience.
Within the category of lay witnesses, there are two subgroups:
Lay witnesses who are strangers
Lay witnesses who are strangers are those with whom you have not had prior contact, but they saw the accident and can testify to the conditions or to who was at fault.
Lay witnesses who are known to you
In addition to lay witnesses who are strangers, you may also use lay witnesses known to you who can testify to the pain and suffering you endured following the accident. You may use family members, friends, colleagues, neighbours and anyone else you interact with as lay witnesses.
If you are using lay witnesses in your personal injury case, there is no limit to how many you can have. Your lawyer will go through and decide which witnesses to use for the best outcome in your case.
For someone to be used as an expert witness, the courts must recognize that the person is qualified by nature of their education, certification and/or experience in an area relating to your claim and that their procedures are guided by the rules of evidence. Not only can an expert witness testify to what they have observed, but they can also offer their opinions, inferences or conclusions based on information they have been given. There are varying expert witnesses that may be used in court, but the ones most commonly called upon in personal injury case are doctors.
In British Columbia, there is at this time no limit on the number of expert witnesses you may use in a court case with the ICBC. However, that may soon change. This is due to proposed changes to the ICBC policy that was announced by Attorney General, David Elby on February 11, 2019. When the changes are made, you will only be allowed to use one expert and report for claims of less than $100,000. For all other claims, you will be allowed up to three experts and reports.
Do you need a personal injury lawyer in Surrey?
While for now, you may use as many witnesses as you choose, there are ones will add more value to your claim than others. When you hire a personal injury lawyer, you will not have to worry about identifying which witnesses you should or should not use. Your lawyer will deal with all the witnesses for you.
If you are searching for a personal injury lawyer in Surrey, contact us at Nirwan Law Corporation. At Nirwan Law Corporation, we understand how frustrating it can be filing a personal injury claim especially when you are still recovering from your injuries. That’s why we will do everything in our power to help make the process less daunting.
We consider our clients as friends and it hurts us to see you suffer from an accident that was someone else’s fault. Let us help you protect your rights and get the compensation you deserve. Give us a call today to schedule an appointment with our experienced Surrey personal injury lawyer. The initial consultation is free.