Understanding the types of evidence that you need to present in a car accident lawsuit can be confusing. There are many different categories of evidence that you can present, and there are unique rules that apply to certain types of evidence. Although it may seem like liability is clear, it is still essential to present sufficient evidence to meet your burden of proof and to show the jury that you are entitled to relief. As dedicated Massachusetts car accident lawyers, we have assisted numerous accident victims with protecting their legal rights.
A recent appellate opinion demonstrates the necessity of being thorough when presenting evidence in your lawsuit. The plaintiff was driving his vehicle along the Massachusetts Turnpike when a vehicle being transported on a flatbed trailer fell from the flatbed and struck the plaintiff’s vehicle. The plaintiff filed a personal injury lawsuit against the owner of the car that slid off the flatbed truck and the individuals who were transporting the car on the flatbed. The lawsuit proceeded to a trial, and the jury returned a verdict for one of the defendants.
The plaintiff appealed the lower court’s entry of judgment in favor of the defendant on several bases. First, he argued that the defendant’s attorney made inappropriate statements during opening argument and that a mistrial should have been granted as a result. Next, he argued that the jury should have been given an instruction about a legal doctrine called res ipsa loquitur. This principle holds that the occurrence of some types of events implies that negligence was involved. The plaintiff can offer circumstantial evidence to show that the harm would not typically have occurred without some negligent conduct. Finally, the plaintiff argued that the trial court erred in refusing to grant his motion for a new trial.