Personal injury Library

Should My Attorney Investigate the Defendant?

After a car accident, the best attorneys conduct the best research to help you win.

The facts and circumstances regarding the accident are obviously a large part of a car accident case. But, to really get the results you want, you need to know as much about the driver that hit you as possible. The means obtaining every available piece of information possible so that when we go to court, there are absolutely no surprises. With our experienced attorneys, the defendant will have nothing left to hide.

In this article, we will describe to you the step-by-step process that we use when researching the party that caused your injuries to help build your case. As crucial as, it is equally important that we investigate the defendant who him or herself caused your accident.

We always conduct a thorough background check on the driver.

We want to know as much about the person who caused your accident as possible. In order to do so, we perform the following tasks:

  1. Criminal background information. When you have suffered any type of injury because of the wrongdoing of another party, whether or not that party has a criminal background is always something that should be looked into. For example, if a driver has a history of drunk driving, that could be admissible in court. Additionally, if the driver is asked under oath if he's been convicted of a crime and lies about it, the jury will get to know that the defendant is not only a crook, but a dishonest one at that.

  2. Whether or not the defendant was involved in a prior lawsuit. If the defendant was involved in previous legal squabbles, that could be relevant. While evidence from a prior lawsuit would generally not be admissible in your case, if the defendant has a past filled with similar complaints being lodged against him, we could find within those cases' filings information that could prove quite useful.
  3. Ascertain the defendant's net worth and assets. If the defendant is wealthy, the entire settlement strategy will change. Individuals with high net worths may not be able to hide behind Texas's "homestead exception," which protects people's main home and some personal property. However, if the defendant has large stocks of cash or securities, we can chase after them. If he does not have any assets, we'll have to solely rely on whatever insurance he has available.
  4. The defendant's driving record. Perhaps surprisingly, the defendant's driving record is generally not admissible in court. This is because we are prosecuting bad acts, not bad people. However, if the defendant is asked under oath in a deposition prior to trial if he's ever gotten into trouble while driving and he lies, then that information can come into evidence.

We always monitor the defendant's social networking activity.

These days, Facebook, Twitter, and other social media outlets can be a major factor in lawsuits because they may reveal the defendant's mindset prior to and after the accident. We've actually had cases where defendant drivers tweeted how intoxicated they felt within a short period of time prior to the accident, or evidence that the driver was literally writing Facebook posts while behind the wheel. Likewise, we've seen defendants make profoundly unwise remarks about on social media about the legal process and even their own fault in the accident. Therefore, monitoring social websites can be crucial in figuring out what happened that caused your particular injury and how the defendant reacted to the accident in the weeks following it's occurrence.

Lastly, we conduct a series of depositions.

Depositions are formal "interviews" that allow attorneys to gather the out-of-court testimony of witnesses to your accident that will later be reduced to writing and used in the discovery process and at trial in your lawsuit. They are tools at our disposal to better figure out exactly how the accident occurred and allow us to discover all of the facts and evidence that is relevant to your claim's success. It is a method by which we interview parties that were involved in some way with the accident, that may be able to cast light on what happened that caused the accident and your resulting injuries.

The defendant himself will be placed under oath and then confronted with the evidence we have collected about him. It is here that we can trap him with his own words. For example, if he claims he's penniless, we can show him an asset search we performed that shows he's got several large pieces of property. Or, if he claims he wasn't drinking prior to the accident, we can show him tweeted photos from just before the accident that clearly indicate he was intoxicated.

Don't waste your claim on an rookie attorney.

The process of researching to defendant in your lawsuit may appear daunting to you. However, our attorneys have represented literally thousands of clients across the state of Texas for 25 years. In that time, we've learned all the tricks of the trade to track down evidence on the defendant. To discuss your potential lawsuit over a free telephonic or in-person consultation, contact Grossman Law Offices at (855) 326-0000.

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