Articles Tagged with evidence

When an accident involves a commercial truck, there are usually records available with respect to the vehicle’s safety and maintenance. Such records can be made available to an injured victim during the discovery process of a personal injury lawsuit. If those records are improperly withheld–or even destroyed before they can be disclosed–a trial judge has the authority to impose sanctions on the offending party.

Allen v. Sanchez

It is important to note, however, that a judge will only impose sanctions for “spoliation” of evidence when certain standards are met. An ongoing federal personal injury lawsuit, Allen v. Sanchez, helps illustrate how courts deal with these situations.

In any type of personal injury lawsuit, it is important for the parties to the case to preserve all evidence that may assist the court in determining the facts. Under no circumstances should a party ever intentionally withhold or destroy evidence. Even in cases where evidence may have been lost by accident, a judge may still interpret that as an intentional act and impose sanctions against the offending party.

O’Berry v. Turner

For example, a federal judge in Valdosta, Georgia, recently imposed sanctions against a pair of corporate defendants in an ongoing truck accident lawsuit. The underlying case involves a June 2013 incident. A man was driving his car when a tractor trailer allegedly swerved into his lane. The impact sent the car off the road and into a light pole. The driver and his passenger were injured and subsequently sued multiple parties, including the driver and owners of the tractor trailer.