Can Dashboard Cameras Be Used as Evidence in Personal Injury Cases?
Car accidents frequently result in catastrophic injury and other devastating losses. It is important that liable persons/parties are held accountable for damages related to a car accident. Unfortunately, few people are willing to accept fault for a collision.
When accident liability is in dispute, plaintiffs must rely strongly on evidence to build their case. With dashboard cameras becoming increasingly common, many drivers wonder if dashboard cams can be used as evidence in a personal injury case. Here, car accident lawyers at the Foley Law Firm help individuals in Scranton, Stroudsburg, and Wilkes-Barre, PA, understand legal guidelines for dashboard cameras, and how they can affect a personal injury lawsuit.
Legal Guidelines for Dashboard Cameras
Before we go into the use of dashboard cameras (cams) as evidence, let’s review the legality of these devices. Many states have laws against the placement and/or use of a dashboard camera. Fortunately for drivers in Pennsylvania, this state is one where dashboard cams are legal. However, there are some guidelines that must be followed.
In Pennsylvania, a dashboard camera can be installed as long as it does not create a distraction for the driver. This means that the device cannot have a monitor that can be viewed while driving.
Dashboard cameras must also comply with Pennsylvania’s privacy laws, which require that parties consent to audio recordings. To comply with these laws drivers must provide clear warnings/signage to vehicle occupants that their conversations may be recorded. A simpler solution would be to disable any audio recording capabilities that may be present on the dashboard camera.
Where Can I Place My Dashboard Camera?
Not only is it important that a dashboard camera not serve as a distraction to drivers, but it is also essential that they do not obstruct the driver’s view. Therefore, Pennsylvania law stipulates that dashboard cameras can only be placed in the following areas:
- The lower right corner of the windshield
- The lower left corner of the windshield
- The upper section of the windshield
Using a Dashboard Camera as Evidence in a Personal Injury Lawsuit
As long as dashboard cameras adhere to the above-mentioned laws, they can be used as evidence in a personal injury lawsuit. Footage from a dashboard cam can be used by both insurance companies and the court system to establish liability for a car crash. Dashboard cams can be especially effective because they record the entire car accident, including the instances that led up to the collision, as opposed to still photos, which only capture the aftermath of an accident.
While dashboard cam footage can be beneficial to drivers who are not at-fault for a collision, it can also be detrimental if a driver makes an error that leads to an accident. Before making dashboard recordings available, drivers should consult with a knowledgeable attorney, such as those at the Foley Law Firm, to ensure that the evidence is in their favor.
Let’s Discuss the Details of Your Case
If you have been involved in a car accident and have footage of the collision, the attorneys at the Foley Law Firm may be able to use it as evidence to prove your case and maximize compensation for damages. To discuss the details of your accident with our lawyers, contact our law firm online, or call us at (570) 342-8194.