What should you do after a car accident ?
What should you do after a car accident?
More than six million car accidents occur every year in the United States. One in three accidents involves personal injury to the driver and the passengers. Out of this number, two of the accidents involve fatal accidents. If you or your loved one is ever involved in a car accident, there are certain things that you need to take care of.
- Stop the car immediately as it is an offense to drive away from the accident scene.
- Switch the hazard lights on to prevent further accidents. If it’s dark and your lights are not working due to the accident, keep you flashlight on to protect yourself and your vehicle
- Check for injuries and call for an ambulance. Often injuries caused by car accidents are not immediately visible and people start reporting the pain in a day or two following the accident. Seek medical attention by visiting your family physician because even if the accident has minor impact, it can cause a deeper injury to your spinal cord.
- Call the police even if the accident is minor and there are no serious injuries, still you should call police. You may need a police report to file a claim with the insurance company.
- Gather information from witnesses and others involved in the accident
- Take names and contact information of the drivers and passengers
- Take description of the vehicles
- The license numbers of the drivers
- Note down the license plate numbers
- Take names and contact information of the witnesses
- Take the name and badge number of the police officer
- Take pictures of the vehicles if there is a visible damage. If you have any visible injuries, take pictures of them as well.
- File the claim for the accident to your insurance company as soon as possible. Many policies require immediate reporting.
- Consult an attorney to protect your rights. This is the most important you should do immediately after the accident. Your attorney can make sure that the insurance companies do not take advantage of you and give you much less compensation than you deserve. Do not give any statements to the insurance companies without consulting your attorney. Personal injury lawyers work on contingency basis, which means they do not charge any legal fee until they win the case for you. So it is advisable to always hire a personal injury lawyer.
It happens in the blink of an eye. No one expects an automobile accident, but if it happens, it’s important to know what to do. If you are in an accident where you feel you have been the victim, it’s important to know how to protect yourself and receive any compensation that may be owed to you. In an accident, most people do not think to record their observations. Take note of as many details as possible relating to the accident. Something as small as a skid mark on the ground or a person’s behavior after an accident could become a key detail in a legal proceeding. If you have a cell phone that is equipped with a camera, do not hesitate to snap pictures of the accident scene. These images may help get the compensation you deserve.
Never apologize or take responsibility for what has happened. Even the most benign sympathetic words can be twisted in court to allege fault. If you have apprehension about speaking with the other party involved in the accident wait until police or emergency rescue crews arrived at the scene. An extra set of eyes and ears may help tell your story. Sometimes people may attempt to settle matters without the assistance of law enforcement or attorneys. If you have been in an accident and the other party suggests this to you, decline immediately and take note of the proposition. Finally, as soon as you get the chance, write down as many details as you can retelling the accident. Immediately following, your senses may actually be more alert thanks to the adrenaline rush that often comes with a scary situation. These details may assist you in more accurately detailing the events of the accident. The best thing to do is not get in an accident in the first place. Unfortunately, that decision is sometimes out of your hands. If you find yourself in need of assistance following an accident, remember these simple tips and contact us. Frekhtman & Associates are ready to represent you.