Circumstantial Evidence is evidence for which there is no direct or absolute proof. In other words, circumstantial evidence relies on the inference of facts rather than on the establishment of the fact itself.
Provable facts are considered direct evidence. Inferred facts are considered circumstantial evidence.
Listed below are examples of circumstantial evidence that may be presented during a car accident personal injury claim.
- Photos of the defendant’s car with damage you and your attorney attribute to the accident, which either supports witness testimony or police reports of the accident, or infers facts about the accident, if no bystanders were present to witness it.
- Testimony from witnesses who state the driver of the other vehicle was angry and acting erratically prior to getting behind the wheel, which infers that the defendant did not use proper restraint or caution in operating the vehicle. This helps establish negligence on the part of the other driver.
- Evidence proving that the opposing party is not telling the truth about the details of the accident, or the events that led up to the accident, or the events that immediately followed the accident.
Another example: If your personal injury claim involves an injury caused by a malfunctioning piece of exercise equipment at the gym, circumstantial evidence in your lawsuit may include:
- Statements from other gym members that they’ve experienced similar, even if less serious, problems with the same piece of equipment, which can infer gym management was aware there was an ongoing, and potentially worsening, problem with the piece of equipment.
- Testimony from witnesses or some other proof that the equipment was being worked on by gym employees or by contracted service personnel within a few days of the incident that led to your injuries. This could also infer the management was aware that there was an issue with the piece of equipment.