What Is Evidence? 

If you’ve been hurt in an accident caused by another person’s negligence, you could receive financial compensation for your injuries. To file a successful personal injury claim, though, you will need evidence to support your claim.

An experienced St. Louis personal injury lawyer can help you gather evidence, build your case, and help you obtain the compensation you are entitled to.

Every case is unique, and the evidence used in each will depend on the facts of the accident. Meanwhile, the elements of negligence that must be proven are the same in every case. Here, we will review these elements along with the different types of evidence that might apply to your case.  

What Must Be Proven To Win a Personal Injury Case? 

Before getting into the various types of evidence, you’ll need to understand the elements of negligence in a personal injury case.

To win in court, you will need to show the following: 


A defendant must have had a duty of care to the plaintiff. In other words, they must have been expected to show some level of care and caution toward others, including the plaintiff, under the circumstances. For example, a driver has a duty of care toward other drivers to follow traffic signals and drive safely. A store owner, meanwhile, has a duty to keep their business free of hazards that can endanger shoppers. 

Breach of Duty

A defendant must also have breached their duty to the plaintiff. This means that they failed in some way to exercise reasonable care and caution toward others and didn’t act as a reasonable person would have. If a driver runs through a red light or drives the wrong way on a one-way street, they breached their duty to drive safely and follow signals. If a shop owner leaves a spilled liquid on the ground for hours, they breached their duty to clean the spill in an ordinary manner. 


The plaintiff must then prove that the defendant’s actions (or lack thereof) caused the plaintiff’s injuries. Courts call this a “but for” test – that, were it not for the defendant’s breach of duty, the plaintiff’s injuries would not have occurred. Causation can be difficult to prove in some cases, which is where evidence becomes extremely useful. 


Even if a defendant breached their duty and caused the incident, a plaintiff must still show damages as a result. There must be an actual injury to the person or property involved. This is usually shown through evidence such as medical reports, medical bills, property repair estimates, lost wages, and other types of documentation. 

Accident Reports 

Accident and police reports are often involved when an accident happens in a public place or business. The report will be useful since it provides an objective summary of what happened, who was involved, and the location of the incident. It might also describe how the other person caused the accident or shared more of the blame than you for what happened. Your lawyer will review the report, identify any witnesses named in the police report, and use that information to help build your case. 

Video and Photo Evidence

Photos and video can be powerful evidence of an accident and your injuries. If you are able to, take photos of the accident scene and anything noteworthy, document your injuries with photos, as well as any photos taken by police or others. In many situations, surveillance video or cellphone video might have caught your accident on film. A lawyer can help you track down all relevant video evidence in your case. 

Medical Records 

Medical reports and bills can describe what happened to you and the extent of your injuries from an accident. The records can explain how serious your injuries were, what treatment might still be needed, and how your long-term physical health was impacted. Medical bills can help support your claim for economic damages in a personal injury case. 

Employment Records 

If you had to miss work and lost pay due to the accident, your employer’s records can help itemize the time you missed and your financial loss as a result. If you are self-employed or run your own business, any documentation of work you could not do, unfulfilled orders, or other costs from your accident will help. 

Witness Testimony 

Eyewitnesses to an accident can help explain what happened and often back up your own version of events. Locating witnesses long after an accident can be difficult, if not impossible, however. Your personal injury lawyer will help you obtain contact information for as many witnesses as possible as early as possible. 

In some cases, expert witnesses can be used to explain the effects of your injuries or how an accident happened. Again, a personal injury lawyer will know who to call in this situation. 

Any of these items and more can be considered evidence in a personal injury case. In general, anything that can be seen or heard supporting a certain point can be considered evidence. An experienced lawyer will know what to use as evidence in your case and how to use it best. 

Talk To a St. Louis Personal Injury Lawyer To Learn More About Evidence In a Personal Injury Case 

Talk To a St. Louis Personal Injury Lawyer To Learn More About Evidence In a Personal Injury Case 

If you’ve been injured in an accident in the St. Louis, Missouri, area, you can seek financial recovery from the person who caused the accident.

Our dedicated personal injury lawyers at Schultz & Myers Personal Injury Lawyers can evaluate your claim and help gather the evidence needed in your case. Contact us online or call us at (314) 444-4444 today!