We are all used to carrying a camera in our pockets at all times, just think about your cell phone.
Pretty much every cell phone nowadays has a good camera installed, as do laptops and I-pods, etc.
The reality is that we live in a digital age of instant gratification and dash cams are now common in many cars (or bought as an upgrade and installed by the owner).
If you have been injured in an accident and you need a Quality personal injury lawyer then contact The Law Offices of Daniel Kim today.
We wrote this article to answer all the questions you might have about using dash cam evidence for an accident you were involved with.
Why Contact The Law Offices of Daniel Kim
Daniel Kim is a top car accident lawyer in Southern California with over 1000 positive reviews on Yelp, FB, and Google.
Daniel Kim and his legal team have years of experience dealing with car accidents and representing accident victims that have dash cam footage from their accident.
Every accident is unique, and having dash cam footage can make the legal process even more complicated.
Daniel Kim is an expert negotiator that knows how to deal with the insurance companies and Daniel will not be intimidated by them.
The Law Offices of Daniel Kim have recovered hundreds of $ millions for our clients, and Daniel has helped thousands of accident victims over the years.
Daniel Kim is not interested in a quick payday, and he won’t let the insurance company bully you or try to confuse you into signing paperwork with a low settlement amount.
If you have been injured in a car crash then you will want to have a great car accident lawyer like Daniel Kim representing you, because once the insurance companies know you are injured they won’t be so nice anymore.
More Facts About Daniel Kim –
We are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week
We have an A+ rating with the BBB
Our client satisfaction rating is 99%
Daniel will help you get proper medical treatment
Are Dash Cams Legal in California
Dash cams are typically legal for people to use in private vehicles in the state of California.
California state law does however regulate the placement of a recording device.
The device should be placed only outside the range of where an airbag might deploy (meaning dash cam shouldn’t be in the way of an airbag operating correctly).
A camera can be placed in the following locations –
- The lower right-hand corner of your car windshield. The camera can be placed in just a 7 inch square (in the lower right-hand corner).
- The lower left-hand corner of your car windshield is also an acceptable option. Here the camera can be placed in a 5-inch square in the lower left-hand corner.
- Another option is the upper-center portion of the vehicle windshield. Here the camera can be placed in a 5-inch square in the upper-center portion.
Generally most dash cams come equipped with audio recording also, and this of course raises a privacy concern.
In this case the driver needs to post a visible notice for their passengers, explaining that their conversations are being recorded.
If the passengers don’t consent to being recorded, then the audio recording needs to be turned off.
Do Insurance Companies Consider Dash Cam Footage
Even though many car owners and motorcyclists have embraced the usage of a dash cam, the auto insurance industry has been slow to embrace the digital footage.
Most of the larger (and smaller) insurance companies do not mention dash cams in policy documents or even on their websites.
A lot of companies think of video footage as “almost still photos” and don’t necessarily give added weight to any video evidence.
Each insurance company is different and each injury case is different, so it’s important to take all this information on a case by case basis.
Quite often an insurance company will create a very legal and vague statement on dash cams so that they are able to argue they’re not useful if (and when) the footage is being used against them in court on an open accident claim.
As you can see, this stuff gets very complicated when the insurance company is fighting an injury claim, so your best bet is to call Daniel Kim today for a FREE consultation.
Dealing With The Insurance Companies
At first the insurance companies might appear to be your friends after a car accident.
The insurance adjuster might start calling you and asking how you are doing, etc. etc.
Be very careful when you speak to an insurance company because they don’t like paying out money for accident claims, and anything you tell them could be used against you.
Your best bet is to call Daniel Kim before you start dealing with the insurance companies.
The insurance companies have a process they use to determine who was at fault for a car accident, and if you say the wrong things you might regret it later on.
Many times an insurance company will make a settlement offer very quickly in the hopes the injured victim will just say Yes and take the offer, but these offers that happen fast are normally small.
Daniel Kim and his legal team know how to handle the insurance companies so call us today and let us guide you during that process.
Having insurance is a good thing, but after a car accident you’ll see how difficult insurance companies can be to deal with.
Dash Cams as Evidence in Car Accident Case
There are many times after a car accident when it’s difficult to prove fault and place blame.
It can become a “he said versus she said” type of situation if there is no proof as to how the collision occurred and what factors were involved.
The local police department and insurance companies will try to reconstruct an accident based on skid marks, witness statements, weather conditions, and visible accident damage.
Obviously having a dash cam will provide the facts and offer video evidence of exactly what happened in the accident.
And dash cam evidence is admissible in California courts and can be used in your accident case.
Many times though a dash cam won’t capture a complete picture of the accident, due to many factors.
The dash cam itself and camera might not be the highest quality, but it can still capture important info like we listed below –
- Driver speeds
- Seat belt usage
- Road conditions
- Who was driving
- Potential witness statements
Red Light accidents
Often times an accident occurs at a red light because one of the drivers ran a red light.
If a driver ran a red light and was negligent, then the dash cam footage can become crucial to proving your case that the other driver was at fault.
Just relying on witnesses is not nearly as strong as having a dash cam recording as evidence.
Stop sign accidents
A stop sign accident is very similar to a red light accident, in that typically somebody runs a stop sign (or does a California stop) and is at fault for the car accident.
And having a dash cam recording can easily prove who ran the stop sign and caused the car crash.
Hit and run accidents
A hit and run accident is difficult to deal with, but having a dash cam will at least proved an accident happened and the other driver fled the scene.
If you have a good dash cam then there is a chance you’ll be able to capture the other drivers license plates or some distinguishing features about their vehicle, etc.
The odds are that we will all be involved in a car accident about every 18 years, so investing in a dash cam will definitely help you out if you are injured in a car crash.
Benefits Of Installing a Dash Cam
A dash cam is good for lots of things, even catching a thief on camera breaking into your vehicle, but for this article we are focusing on the benefits on a dash cam in a car accident.
There are quite a few benefits to having dash cam footage, but below are the two key points.
Insurance Fraud Prevention
Insurance fraud is still a huge problem in America. Shockingly some drivers will plan and stage auto accidents with another driver who is unaware of the scam. In these cases of course a dash cam can really help the innocent driver that they were not at fault for the crash.
Hard Evidence in A Car Accident
It is always amazing how different two people can remember the same accident. And in accidents that involve 3 or more vehicles just imagine how different the stories are that drivers tell. Having witnesses is great to recall details, and tell the police what they say, but having video footage on a dash cam is really the equalizer that can help guarantee the truth is told and seen by everybody.
How To Choose a Dash Cam
There are so many brands and versions of dash cams to purchase that it can get confusing.
You can find a cheap dash cam for maybe $50, but you can easily spend over $500 if you want the very best model with the newest features.
So all dash cams will record video, but not all dash cams record sound.
The higher priced models will typically offer night vision, GPS feature, wi-fi, and even dual camera recording which can be useful for accident footage.
Just make sure you buy a dash cam that records video, sound, and preferably has night vision.
Below is a list of other features you might want to consider –
- Plenty of storage space
- Loop recording
- Heat tolerance
- Motion detection
- Lane departure warnings
Some of the top brands of dash cams are –
The bottom line is this, having any dash cam installed in your car is a good idea, and you should buy the best model that you can afford.
Getting injured in a car accident is bad enough, but when the other driver, the police report, or the insurance company starts trying to blame you, then having a dash cam can literally “save you” when it comes to the legal process and making sure you get maximum compensation for your injuries.