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A Guide To Obtaining CCTV Footage After An Accident – How To Get CCTV Footage For Personal Injury Claims

Have you been involved in an accident that has caused you to suffer unnecessarily due to the fault of another? If you have been harmed due to a breach in the duty of care owed to you and could prove someone else was liable, then you might be able to make a personal injury claim for compensation. Whether you have been involved in an accident at work, in a public place, on the roads or anywhere else, there may be CCTV footage of the incident. But, you may wonder what sort of a role CCTV of an accident could have in the personal injury claims process, and how to get CCTV footage of a car accident, public place accident or workplace accident you were involved in. This is what this guide has been created to help you with. We will explain all you may need to know about CCTV rules and regulations, including who can view CCTV footage, what the CCTV recording retention period might be, and how to get traffic camera footage in the UK to help with your claim. We’ll also explain a little about the personal injury claim process, and we’ll show you how to obtain CCTV footage after an accident with the assistance of our lawyers. If you’d like to know more about how we could help you request CCTV footage of yourself, or you’d like to begin a claim, simply call 0800 073 8804. Otherwise, why not read below to find out more about how the CCTV of an accident could help with a personal injury claim.

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A Guide To Obtaining CCTV Footage After An Accident

CCTV

CCTV (Closed Circuit Television)

If you have been injured in an accident that was not your fault, you may be wondering how to get CCTV footage of a car accident, an accident at work or any other type of accident that you feel could lead to a personal injury claim. This evidence may be of use when you are looking at how you could prove someone else was responsible for your injuries. When you make a personal injury claim, you would need proof that the accident occurred, as well as who was responsible for it, along with being able to prove that you suffered an injury because of someone else’s irresponsible or negligent behaviour. CCTV might, therefore, be quite useful in these instances, but if you do not know how to get CCTV footage of a car accident, workplace accident, criminal act or another type of accident, you may be unable to prove your claim in some cases. Within the sections below, we’ll explain the role of CCTV footage in accident claims, explaining who can view CCTV footage, how to get traffic camera footage in the UK, as well as explaining how to go about getting CCTV footage of a crime, and more. We’ll also take a look at the Information Commissioner’s Office ICO CCTV code of practice 2019 and look at how that could apply to a request for CCTV after an accident.

What Is The Role Of CCTV Footage In Accident Claims?

If liability is disputed within a personal injury claim, CCTV of an accident may help to clarify who was at fault. However, knowing whether or not CCTV evidence exists is another matter and obtaining it may well be another matter entirely. For example, CCTV on a vehicle (for example a bus) may capture an incident involving 2 other vehicles, but unless the driver with the CCTV had their details taken at the scene, or it was possible to identify the driver with the CCTV as a potential witness, the footage may not be seen. In other cases, even if the camera equipment is known about, it may not have been working.

Does CCTV Footage Get Deleted?

In some cases, the CCTV footage may well have been deleted. Different companies have different policies when it comes to deleting CCTV, and since having CCTV isn’t a legal requirement, there aren’t any rules pertaining to how long it should be stored for.

Could I Request CCTV Footage Of My Accident?

According to the Information Commissioner’s Office ICO, GDPR requirements that need to be followed by CCTV operators include:

  • Making sure people know they are being filmed
  • Explaining why CCTV is being used
  • Controlling who has access to CCTV
  • Deleting the footage when it is no longer required

If you had an accident that wasn’t your fault and was wondering how to get CCTV footage of this, this guide may be of use to you. You may be wondering can you obtain CCTV footage of an accident that you are involved in by law? According to the government’s website, you are allowed to request CCTV footage of yourself. You would be required to make a request for your CCTV accident footage from the owner of the system. You may be able to request CCTV footage with a letter template found online, but you could simply write a letter, asking for the footage under the Data Protection Act.

Requesting CCTV Footage Under The Data Protection Act

If you are considering putting through a request for CCTV accident footage, you may wish to know what your rights are under the Data Protection Act. As we mentioned, anyone who believes they have been filmed on CCTV has a right to ask to see the footage of themselves. Under the Data Protection Act, you should be able to view the footage within 1 calendar month of your request.

You should include your name, the date and the time the CCTV accident footage was taken within your request, as well as a description of how you look so that the CCTV owner could identify you. However, the CCTV owner might not be able to share the CCTV footage, even if you have done everything right regarding your request for CCTV after your accident. If the owner cannot edit other people out to prevent their identity within the footage, they may be able to refuse your request. They could also refuse if sharing the CCTV footage could put criminal investigations at risk. If the CCTV footage relates to a crime you were injured in, then you may be able to fill out a police request for CCTV footage form, but again, your request may be refused if it puts an investigation in jeopardy. The police will let you know whether you would be able to view the footage or not.

Can I Request CCTV Footage Of Someone Else?

It would not be possible for you to request CCTV footage of someone else under the Data Protection Act.

How Do Subject Access Requests Work?

A subject access request is simply a request to someone who has information about you to provide you access to that information, and this could include CCTV accident footage. You are within your rights to put together subject access request in writing (this can also be via email or fax) to anyone who you think holds information about you. The party that has the information about you may charge you for fulfilling your request, but this cannot be more than £10 in most cases. There may be different fees concerning educational, health or credit files.

The Data Protection Act doesn’t prevent someone from requesting a SAR through third parties, such as solicitors. However, it must be established that the requesting party is acting on behalf of the person whose information is being requested.

How Long Could CCTV Footage Be Kept?

As there are no legal requirements for businesses to obtain and keep CCTV footage, there are no laws as to when businesses or individuals can delete their footage. Under GDPR requirements, if a business/individual has data, including CCTV footage, of another person, it should be deleted when no longer required. However, this could be considered a subjective decision and some businesses may keep this information longer than others.

The police, in general, recommend that footage should be kept for 31 days, unless a crime or major event has been captured on the camera, whereupon it may need to be accessed as part of any investigation into such an event.

What Difficulties Could You Face When Trying To Obtain CCTV Footage?

There may be some difficulties that could be encountered when trying to get CCTV footage. As per the above section, different CCTV owners may keep their CCTV footage for longer than others and you may find that CCTV accident footage has been deleted if the CCTV owner was not aware an accident may have been captured. Not only this, but there could be instances where CCTV accident footage was captured but the footage is not clear. In other cases the camera may have failed. Even if there was clear CCTV footage of an accident, the camera owner/operator might be reluctant to share it due to the privacy of others.

In fact, according to Spiller, Keith (2016). Experiences of accessing CCTV data: the urban topologies of subject access requests. Urban Studies, 53(13) pp. 2885–2900, an investigation whereupon a student passed by 17 CCTV cameras and put in a SAR to each owner, resulted in the researcher only receiving 6 images.

If you are wondering how to get CCTV footage of a car accident, public place accident or an accident at a workplace, then a solicitor may be able to put a professional SAR request together as part of your claim for compensation.

What Other Evidence Could You Obtain To Aid A Personal Injury Claim?

Not only could CCTV accident footage provide good evidence as to the events of an accident, there are other forms of evidence that could also be drawn upon to provide proof of liability as well as proof of the injuries you have incurred in an accident that was not your fault.

Witness evidence – Witnesses that were not connected to the accident may provide an account of the events that could help to strengthen your claim.

Photographic evidence – Whether you have collected photographs of the scene of the accident or of your injuries, these may also be useful as part of a personal injury claim.

Medical evidence – You would be required to attend a medical appointment as a part of any personal injury claim. The evidence collected at this appointment could be used to value your claim.

Financial evidence – Whether you have experienced earning losses, medical costs or other costs associated with the accident or your injuries, keeping evidence of these losses and costs could make it easier for you to claim for them.

Information For Businesses Using CCTV Systems

If you are a business that utilises CCTV, you must comply with the ICO requirements for GDPR, which include:

  • Notifying the ICO of the use of CCTV
  • Telling people you are recording them (usually by way of clear signage)
  • Have a designated trained employee to deal with the recordings.
  • Ensuring the system is only used for its intended purpose (for example, not using it to monitor employees’ work when it should be used for detecting criminal activity).

Accident And Injury Compensation Claims Calculator

If you are wondering how much compensation your claim could attract, you may be interested to view the table below, which we have compiled as an alternative to a personal injury claims calculator that you might find elsewhere. The guideline payout amounts in the table below are taken from the Judicial College Guidelines, and while it would not be possible for us to include every possible injury within this table, we could offer some more guidance over the phone if you cannot see your specific injury here. We should also add that these are only guidelines for compensation payouts for the injuries mentioned, and your claim would not have a value attached to it until such time as you had undergone a medical assessment with an independent professional, whereupon a report would be compiled detailing your injuries, prognosis and the level of pain and suffering thought to have been involved.

InjuriesNotesBracket
Fractures to facial bonesPermanent deformities caused by multiple fractures£13,970 to £22,470
Less severe brain/head injuryWhere there could have been a good level of recovery, yet normal function may not have been restored. Concentration/memory loss may remain£14,380 to £40,410
Loss of hearingWhere the claimant is totally deaf. Tinnitus and speech impediment might attract the higher end of this bracket.£85,170 to £102,890
Injuries to the backCases of disc lesions or fractures of discs or of vertebral bodies or soft tissue injuries leading to chronic conditions where, despite treatment (usually involving surgery). £36,390 to £65,440
Injuries to the shoulderBrachal plexus damage potentially caused by neck injury.£18,020 to £45,070
Amputation below the elbowWhether the limb is amputated through the forearm. Severe phantom pain could lead to the higher end of this bracket.£90,250 to £102,890
Injuries to the handLong term function impairment caused potentially by a severe crush-type injury. Surgery may not have resolved the issues.£13,570 to £27,220

Special Damages Accident Victims Could Claim

Along with the payment for the physical/mental injuries you’ve suffered because of your accident, you might also be able to claim compensation for monetary losses or costs that you have experienced directly because of your injuries. These may include, but are not limited to:

Wage loss – Both actual and projected wage losses could be included within a claim for compensation as special damages.

Medical expenses – You may have had to pay for prescriptions for medicines required to treat your injury, or you may have required mobility aids, physiotherapy, counselling or other medical services that may have cost you money. These could also be claimed for.

Travel expenses – If you needed to travel to appointments as a direct consequence of your injuries, then the costs associated with these may be claimed for too.

Care costs – if you needed someone to assist you with day-to-day activities such as dressing, feeding, etc, then these costs may be claimed for as special damages too.

No Win No Fee Personal Injury And Accident Claims

Making a compensation claim could be quite stressful, especially if you have no prior knowledge of personal injury law. This is why some people may choose to look for a personal injury solicitor to help take some of the stress out of making a claim. A personal injury lawyer could not only help a claimant to put together a strong case for compensation, but they could also advise on any offers of compensation, to give you some idea of whether it might be a good idea to take an offer of settlement, or whether you could fight for more compensation than you are being offered.

You may assume that retaining the services of a solicitor would come at a cost, but in fact, if you choose a solicitor that works on a no win no fee basis, there would be nothing to pay upfront for them to begin your claim. Instead, what you would need to do is sign a Conditional Fee Agreement that would state the percentage that your lawyer would take from your compensation in the event of a successful claim. This cannot be more than 25% of the total settlement amount. If your lawyer is not successful in gaining you a compensation payout for a valid claim, then these fees would not be payable. In some cases, a solicitor may advise you to take an insurance policy out to protect against unsuccessful claims, but this is something that may vary between cases. If you would like to know any more about making personal injury claims on a no win no fee basis, we could answer any questions you might have over the phone.

Let Our Solicitors Obtain The CCTV Footage For You

Whether you would like some advice on making a compensation claim for an injury you’ve received in an accident that was not your fault or on how to obtain CCTV for a personal injury claim then we could offer you the guidance and support you need. With a successful history in helping claimants get the compensation they deserve, we have the knowledge and experience not only to assess your eligibility to make a claim, but we could also offer to provide you with a personal injury lawyer who could help take your claim forward, and who could be able to know how to get CCTV footage of your accident. They could also help if you are not able to obtain CCTV footage of an accident. All of the lawyers we work with here at Legal Expert could take your claim on a no win no fee basis, meaning you could begin your claim right away, without having to pay out any funds upfront to get started.

Start Your Accident Claim

To get in touch to begin a claim, or to ask us any further questions about how to obtain CCTV footage after an accident, simply:

Call the Legal Expert team on 0800 073 8804, e-mail info@legalexpert.co.uk, or use the contact form or live chat on the site. We’d be happy to assist you in any way that we can.

Essential References

Data Protection For CCTV Usage – Here, businesses can find information on using CCTV correctly as a business.

Evidence For Loss Of Earnings – Advice on evidence for loss of earnings claimants.

Information On The Time Limit For Claimants – Here, you can see our guide on the personal injury claims time limit for personal injury claims.

Written By Jo

Edited By Melissa.

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