Personal Injury Lawyers, Gilbert, AZ

How to Get Camera Footage of a Car Accident in Maricopa County, AZ

Video footage of your crash can serve as powerful evidence—if you can get it.

Whether it was an intersection accident in Phoenix, a hit-and-run in Tempe, a rear-end crash at a light in Scottsdale, or another type of car accident in Maricopa County, surveillance camera footage can serve as key evidence in injury claims and lawsuits. When legally obtained, types of potentially available camera video that may be used as evidence include:

  • Traffic camera footage (usually at intersections).
  • Surveillance camera footage from a local business or residence.
  • Dashcam footage.
  • Security camera footage.
  • Body camera footage (law enforcement).
  • Witness footage captured on smartphones or other devices.

Obtaining video evidence of your crash can significantly impact the outcome of your claim, potentially turning the tide in your favor. However, capturing crash footage isn't always guaranteed, and even if it is, obtaining a copy often presents challenges. Typically, gathering video evidence of a car accident requires extensive effort and may necessitate legal intervention from an attorney, but the potential benefits make it a worthwhile endeavor.

At Browne Law Group in Gilbert, AZ, attorney Byron Browne is an experienced car accident lawyer who knows how to find the facts that matter to a case, even if that means locating and preserving surveillance footage of a crash. If you were injured in a motor vehicle accident involving negligence, get the Anti-Lawyer Lawyer on your side. Contact us today.

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Surveillance video of Maricopa County crashes

After a car accident, the thought of navigating the legal process and collecting evidence to support your claim can be overwhelming, especially when you’re injured, in pain, and just trying to recover from the crash. The steps to procure camera footage after a crash often involve:

  • Identify potential sources: Determine all possible sources of surveillance footage, including traffic cameras at intersections, surveillance cameras from nearby businesses or residences, dashcams, security cameras, body cameras worn by law enforcement officers, and witness footage captured on smartphones or other devices.
  • Contact relevant authorities: Contact the appropriate authorities or agencies responsible for managing traffic cameras, such as local law enforcement or transportation departments, to request access to traffic camera footage at the intersection where the accident occurred.
  • Contact property owners or managers: Contact the owners or managers of nearby businesses or residences to inquire about the availability of surveillance footage from their security cameras that may have captured the accident.
  • Obtain permission and request footage: Secure permission from property owners or managers to access and review surveillance footage from their cameras. Submit formal requests for footage from traffic cameras, businesses, residences, and any other relevant sources.
  • Retrieve dashcam footage: If you or another party involved in the accident have a dashcam installed in your vehicle, retrieve the footage from the dashcam's memory card or storage device.
  • Collect law enforcement footage: If law enforcement officers responded to the accident scene and wore body cameras, request access to any relevant footage captured by their body cameras during the incident.
  • Gather witness footage: Contact any witnesses to the accident who may have captured footage on their smartphones or other devices. Request copies of the footage or ask witnesses to provide statements detailing what they captured.
  • Review and document evidence: Carefully review all obtained footage and document any relevant details, vehicle movements, traffic conditions, or contributing factors to the accident observed in the footage.

This would be a lot of work for anyone, let alone someone recently injured in a crash. As such, hiring a car accident lawyer with extensive experience handling claims in Maricopa County can make a meaningful difference in the outcome of your case.

Obstacles to recovering video evidence of a crash

Challenges to obtaining video camera footage are common after a car accident. Determining whether video exists is the first hurdle. But others may soon follow. Perhaps the property owner refuses to cooperate, or there’s a fast-approaching deadline to destroy the evidence. Navigating these obstacles may require persistence, clear communication, and potential legal action to overcome. When seeking video surveillance footage of a car accident, watch out for these roadblocks:

  • Privacy concerns. Property owners or managers may be hesitant to provide access to surveillance footage due to concerns about privacy laws and regulations. They may require assurances that your request complies with applicable Arizona laws.
  • Limited retention period. Surveillance footage is often stored for a limited period before being overwritten or deleted. Obtaining relevant footage may become challenging or impossible if too much time has elapsed since the accident occurred. Some cameras keep footage for weeks, others just a day or two. That’s why it’s so important to contact an attorney as soon as possible. If video footage does exist, your lawyer can take steps to ensure it isn’t lost or destroyed.
  • Technical issues. Surveillance cameras may malfunction or experience technical issues, leading to gaps or inconsistencies in the footage. Retrieving clear and usable footage could be difficult if the cameras were not properly maintained or configured.
  • Property ownership disputes. If the accident occurred on or near a property with multiple owners or tenants, disputes over ownership or access rights to the surveillance footage may complicate the retrieval process.
  • Legal obstacles. Property owners may require legal documentation, such as subpoenas or court orders, to release surveillance footage, particularly if they are concerned about potential legal liabilities or privacy issues.
  • Refusal to cooperate. Property owners or managers may refuse to cooperate or be unresponsive to requests for surveillance footage, especially if they perceive the request as burdensome or have concerns about getting involved in legal proceedings.
  • Costs and fees. Some property owners may impose fees or charges for accessing or obtaining copies of surveillance footage.

How an experienced car accident lawyer can help

Car accident lawyers are skilled in conducting crash investigations, which involve gathering evidence and information relevant to a legal case. An attorney can help someone get surveillance footage of a car accident through:

  • Negotiation and communication. Lawyers can negotiate with property owners, businesses, or government agencies on behalf of their clients to secure access to surveillance footage. They can effectively communicate the importance of obtaining the footage for the client's case.
  • Preservation of Evidence. Lawyers can ensure that surveillance footage is preserved and not destroyed or overwritten, especially if legal action is anticipated. They can advise clients on the importance of preserving evidence and take appropriate steps to safeguard it.
  • Subpoenas and court orders. Lawyers understand the legal requirements and procedures for obtaining these documents. They can draft and file subpoenas or court orders to compel property owners or managers to provide access to surveillance footage.
  • Legal Representation. If disputes arise over access to surveillance footage or if legal action is necessary to obtain the footage, lawyers can provide representation in court proceedings. They can advocate for their clients' rights and interests in legal proceedings.
  • Review and analysis. Lawyers can review and analyze the obtained surveillance footage to identify relevant details, inconsistencies, or factors that may strengthen their client's case. They can provide expert interpretation and analysis of the footage in legal proceedings.

Building strong cases in Maricopa County

At Browne Law Group in Gilbert, Arizona, attorney Byron Browne and his dedicated legal team know how to build rock-solid cases and get results in Maricopa County. If you’ve been injured in a car accident in Gilbert or another Maricopa County community, don’t hesitate to contact Browne Law Group and schedule a free case evaluation. Find out how the Anti-Lawyer Lawyer can help you obtain the justice and financial compensation you deserve. Contact us today.

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