What If My Injury Is Caught On Video?
What about the video taken by a store of a person's slip and fall? The video taken by a store of a person's fall is different from a surveillance video and is distinguished in the case law. Recently, the Fourth District Court of Appeal said that a permanent store surveillance tape (which is generally considered non-work product) may be discoverable. In the case of Target Corporation v. Vogel, 31 So.3d 962 (Fla. 4th DCA 2010), Target sought review of the trial court's order compelling production prior to plaintiff's deposition of a static security video taken by a store-mounted camera of the plaintiff's fall. The Fourth DCA held that the video was not work product prepared to aid counsel in trying the case. It was discoverable upon the plaintiff showing he had no other way to obtain the evidence in question. A video can be authenticated via the silent witness theory where the party to seeking to introduce it would show that the video is reliable. This requires a determination from the judge that: (1) there is evidence establishing the time and date of the video; (2) there has been no tampering with the video; (3) the video equipment was sound; and (4) there is testimony identifying the participants depicted in the video. In Vogel, the injured person was allowed by the Court to review the video of his fall before he testified. Be sure your attorney requests the video, saying there is no other way to get it plus the injured person needs it to refresh his recollection.