The Importance of a Dash Cam in an Auto Accident Case

The dash cam (dashboard camera) is becoming more popular year upon year for drivers nationwide. A small recording device attached to your dashboard can give clear visual footage of any event that happened in front of your vehicle. Is it worth your while to invest in a dashboard camera for 2019? A Las Vegas auto accident attorney explains all:

Dash Cam

Are There Restrictions on Dash Cams in Nevada?

Not all states in the US have the same restrictions when it comes to using dash cams. This has predominantly to do with the obstruction of view laws regarding windshields. Nevada’s laws in regards to this are plain and straightforward:

NRS 484D.435  Windshield & Windows Must Be Unobstructed.

  1.  A person shall not drive any motor vehicle with any sign, poster or other non-transparent material upon the front windshield, side wings or side or rear windows of such vehicle which obstructs the driver’s clear view of the highway or any intersecting highway.

2.  This section shall not apply to any sign, poster or other material displayed in the 6-inch square area of the lower corner of the windshield farthest removed from the driver or to any other material required to be displayed on a windshield or window by federal or state law.

Who is Using Dash Cams?

There are certain people that are obligated to use these devices during work. The most obvious ones are the police force, where they have dash cams installed in all state provided vehicles. The Nevada police force has also been obligated to wear body cameras as of September 1st 2018, in order to further enlighten courts on incidents that have occurred. But now regular citizens are installing these devices in their vehicles to better protect themselves.

What Are the Benefits of Installing Dash Cams?

There are many benefits to installing dash cams in your vehicle. As auto accident attorneys we have come across multiple cases were a dash cam has had a major impact on the outcome. Some of the benefits include but are not limited to:

  • Provides irrefutable visual (and audio) evidence that can be used in a court of law when it comes to hit and runs, traffic violations, etc. 
  • Has the potential to save money on auto insurance premiums subject to insurance company used. 
  • Reduces time to settle claims with insurance company. 
  • Reduces time to settle claims in a personal injury case. 
  • Has had an impact as reckless drivers are now aware they could be recorded, making the roads safer

Is Dash Cam Evidence Admissible in Court?

The evidence gathered by a dash cam is almost always admissible in court, provided the situation being investigated occurred outside of the vehicle. Privacy laws dictate that passengers must be informed of the presence of a recording device. If they aren’t informed ahead of time, and if an incident happened inside of the vehicle by a passenger there is a chance that it will not be admissible. If a dash cam has the capability to record audio within the car, and the plaintiff neglected to inform the passenger that they were being recorded, the evidence can be dismissed in court.

In What Cases Does a Dash Cam Become Useful?

Here are some of the examples of cases were a dash cam can be useful:

Hit & Run

  • The recording devices can provide irrefutable evidence if you were the victim (or suspect) in a hit and run incident involving another vehicle or a pedestrian.

Negligent Driving / Reckless Driving

  • Negligent and reckless driving has been on the rise year upon year. A lot of this has to do with distracted driving, where drivers are texting, eating, drinking and not giving their full attention to the road. Common signs of reckless driving include swerving, speeding, aggressively tailgating, and braking unexpectedly with no cause.

Insurance Fraud

  • There have been many instances of insurance fraud within the state of Nevada over the years. Pedestrians who are desperate for a quick payout have the inclination to jump out in front of unsuspecting drivers, injuring themselves and filing a personal injury claim against the driver. With the evidence provided by a camera, you can protect yourself against these fraudulent claims.

There are also non-auto accident cases for which dash cams can provide evidence, provided the device is capable of operating when the vehicle is off. There are dashcam models that are on standby 24/7 and use motion detectors to activate the recording. They can capture incidents even if the owner of the vehicle is not present.

Grand Theft

  • This is one of the situations where the internal audio picked up within your vehicle is admissible in court, as the defendant in this case loses the right to privacy once they commit the crime of theft.

Property Damage / Assault & Battery / Premises Liability

  • If your vehicle is parked in a public space, it is possible for a dashboard camera to capture any crimes that are committed within its view. You may be obligated to attend court if you’re dash cam provides sufficient evidence. This can include property damage, assault and battery, premises liability, and slip & fall cases.

Las Vegas Auto Attorney Explains Importance of Dash Cams

As personal injury attorneys in Las Vegas, Nevada we know the importance of gathering as much concrete evidence as possible. Dash cams are an excellent and obvious device when it comes to capturing accidents on the road. If you have been involved in any type of auto accident, or sustained injuries because of another driver’s actions you need aggressive representation in order to get justice.

Harris & Harris Injury Lawyers have been serving the great state of Nevada for over 20 years, call us at (702) 384-1414. You can also find our contact information here. Your initial consultation is completely free.