​ሕግንና ደንብን በተመለከተ እርዳታ ማግኘት ይፈልጋሉን? - Amharic | هل تحتاج لمساعدة قانونية؟ - Arabic | ܤܢܝܼܩܵܐ ܝ݇ܘ̤ܬ ܠܗܲܝܵܪܬܵܐ ܩܵܢܘܿܢܵܝܬܵܐ؟ - Assyrian | Need Legal Help? - Auslan | Treba li vam pravna pomoc? - Bosnian | Burmese â Need Legal Help? | 需要法律帮助吗? - Chinese Simplified | 需要法律幫助嗎? - Chinese Traditional | Trebate li pravnu pomoć? - Croatian | ضرورت به کمک قانونی دارید؟ - Dari | Wïc Kuɔɔny në Wɛ̈t Löŋ? - Dinka | آیا به کمک حقوقی نیاز دارید؟ - Farsi | Gadreva na Veivuke Vakalawa? - Fijian | Kailangan ninyo ba ng tulong na panglegal? - Filipino | Besoin d’aide juridique ? - French | Χρειάζεστε βοήθεια σε νομικά ζητήματα - Greek | क्या आपको कानूनी सलाह चाहिए? - Hindi | Butuhkan Bantuan dalam Masalah Hukum? - Indonesian | Hai bisogno di assistenza legale? - Italian | ត្រូវការជំនួយលើបញ្ហាផ្លូវច្បាប់ឬទេ? - Khmer | 법적인 도움이 필요하십니까? - Korean | Ви треба ли помош со правни работи? - Macedonian | कानूनी सहयोग चाहिएको छ? - Nepalese | Necessita de ajuda com questões jurídicas? - Portuguese | Вам нужна юридическая помощь? - Russian | E Manaomia Fesoasoani i Mea Tau Tulafono? - Samoan | а ли вам треба помоћ у правним питањима? - Serbian | Ma u baahan tahay Caawimmad xagga sharciga ah?- Somali | ¿Necesita ayuda con cuestiones jurídicas? - Spanish | சட்ட உதவி தேவையா? - Tamil | ท่านต้องการความช่วยเหลือทางด้านกฎหมายไหม? - Thai | Fiema’u ha tokoni Fakalao? - Tongan | Yasal Danışmaya İhtiyacınız mı var? - Turkish | Cần Được Giúp Đỡ Về Luật Pháp? - Vietnamese |

Evidence about d​amage and losses 

When gathering evid​ence about the damage and loss ca​used by an accident, you should:

    ​If the matter goes to a hearing at court you can use this informat​​​ion ​​​to p​​​repare a statement. You can attach copies of any diagrams you draw, q​uotes and invoices you obtain, and photos you take.

    Make notes about the accident 

    It is a good idea to write down exactly what happen​ed in the accident and what damage and/or loss you or the other driver suffered while it is still fresh in your mind. You could make a note or prepare a diary entry.

    You should keep a record ​​of the following information:

    • ​the area of your car that was damaged, for example, the rear passenger door panel 
    • the type of damage, for example, a 10cm long scratch which removed the paint 
    • any loss, for example, broken vase that was in the boot 
    • the area of the other driver's car that was damaged 
    • the type of damage to the other driver's car 
    • any loss the other driver told you about at the time, if any 
    • any other relevant details.​

    If you start a court case against the other driver, and need help preparing a statement, see: Instructions for preparing your statement (Plaintiff) - car accidents and Sample statement (Plaintiff) - car accidents

    If you receive a claim from the other driver, and need help preparing a statement, see: Instructions for preparing your statement (Defendant) - car accidents and Sample statement (Defendant) - car accidents.

    Get witness statements 

    If there were witnesses to the accident, you will need their contact details. If you were not able to get these at the scene of the accident, but the police were there, you may be able to get this information from the police. For more information, see Calling the Police

    After the accident you can contact the witnesses and ask them to prepare and sign a statement about the accident. You can't force a witness to give you a statement. If the case goes to court, you may be able to serve the witness with a subpoena which orders them to give evidence. 

    A witness statement may be able to provide details about: 

    • which part of your car and the other drivers car came into contact as a result of the accident
    • whether they noticed any damage to the cars
    • any problems they noticed as a result of the damage, for example, if you were unable to open your door to get out of the car, if they noticed leaking oil or other fluid, or if you were unable to indicate because your indicator light was smashed.

    For more information, see Instructions for preparing witness statements - car accidents

    For an example of a witness statement, see Sample witness statement - car accidents

    Take photos 

    It is a good idea to take photos of the damage to your car, to the other car, and any other damaged property.

    For example, if you make a claim for a dent to your red car and the other driver denies that they caused that damage and claim that your car was dented before the accident, a photo of the driver's white car, which has your red paint on the area of impact, may help to prove that the other driver is responsible for that damage.

    Hint icon You could take photos of the damage to the other vehicle with your mobile phone or camera. 

    Draw a sketch of the damage

    You should make a sketch of how the accident happened. If you are making a claim, a sketch could help to show that damage was caused because of the contact made by the cars. If you are defending a claim, a sketch could help to show that damage was not caused because of the contact made by cars. You can include the following: 

    • name of the street and cross streets, if any
    • position of your car
    • position of the other driver's car
    • position of any other cars e.g parked cars
    • trees, kerbs, or crossings
    • lanes and lane direction
    • width of the street
    • traffic lights
    • street signs e.g. stop signs
    • any other relevant details.

    For example, if your car was damaged to the rear left hand corner because the other driver failed to observe you coming out of your parking spot and ran into you as you were reversing, your sketch may be able to show how the cars were positioned and what part of the other car hit your car. 

    You could neatly label the sketch or you could use a key to show what your picture refers to. For an example of completed sketches see Sample sketch 1 and Sample sketch 2

    Get expert reports 

    If the accident has resulted in damage that requires specialist repairs (or the mechanics that you and the other driver visit have very different views about the extent of the damage and the cost of repairs) it may be useful to get an expert report. An expert report could explain what the expert thinks about whether the impact from the accident is responsible for the damage and whether it is likely that the damage existed before the accident. You should get legal advice about whether an expert report could be useful in your situation.

    Hint icon Expert reports may be expensive. If you get an expert report the author of the report may also need to come to court and give evidence about what they wrote. You should check how much the expert will charge for the cost of the report and any court attendance.

    Get invoices and receipts 

    You should make sure you get and keep invoices and receipts for any expenses or loss you experienced as a result of the accident such as towing fees, loss of personal items, loss of use of your vehicle and replacement vehicle hire costs. ​

    If you make a claim against the other driver for your losses you will need this evidence to prove the exact amount of the loss. 

    Get repair quotes 

    You should get quotes for the cost of repairing the damage caused to your vehicle. If you make a claim against the other driver for your damage you will need this evidence to prove the exact amount it will cost to repair your car. For more information, see Getting repair quotes.

    Alert Icon You may only be able to m​ake a claim for certain loss you experienced. You may not be able to make a claim for all your losses. For more information, see What can be claimed?​​​