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Will a Dash Cam Help You in a Car Accident?

You may have seen those video montages of the crazy things drivers have captured on their dash cams-dramatic accidents, near misses, police chases and other scary driving. But what about real-world applications? Can dash cams actually help you prove your side if you get into an accident?

Insurance companies are used to deciding claims based on evidence that's found at the scene of every accident, such as photos of the damage, police reports and witness accounts. A dash cam may help, but it may not be useful. Insurance adjusters are more interested in determining the "why" of the accident and the cameras generally show the "how."

Dash Cam Pros

  • Low-cost: Most dash cams are $60-$150.
  • Can help prove a hit-and-run accident.
  • Can show the severity of an impact when there's little damage but still personal injury.
  • May help with your claim, but will depend on the adjuster handling your case.

Dash Cam Cons

  • Can get you in legal trouble if they record sound. If your dash cam records sound as well as video, you'll need to notify everyone who rides with you that they may be recorded, otherwise you may be violating wiretap laws in your state.
  • If your cam obscures more than a 5-inch square from your view, you could be breaking state or local laws.
  • You won't get an insurance discount for your troubles. Although insurers in the UK often offer a 10 to 15 percent discount for having a dash cam installed, U.S. insurers have yet to follow suit. That's because the insurance industry asserts that dash cams only provide information, they don't prevent accidents or make people safer drivers.

At Bouchillon, Crossan & Colburn, L.C., our attorneys have more than 40 years dedicated to giving clients the attention, advice, support and empowerment they need to effectively meet their goals. We are committed to the principle that all persons shall have equal justice under the law. If you or a loved one has been injured and is seeking a qualified personal injury attorney, contact our Huntington, West Virginia office to speak with an attorney about your case, or call 304-523-8451.

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