In the moments after a traumatic accident, no one is ever thinking clearly, and it can be difficult to remember what you are supposed to do next.
If you have been in an accident, take a deep breath, and remember these things.
1. Check Your Health.
First and foremost, determine if you are hurt. If you require medical attention, seek it immediately. The shock of an accident often masks symptoms of neck or back injury that will prove serious later on, so don’t risk making it worse by delaying medical help.
2. Don’t Admit Fault.
Even if you think you may have been partially at fault for the accident, never say that out loud to any of the other drivers. Your part may not have mattered had it not been for the harm contributed by other drivers. Until the accident can be evaluated, don’t undermine their actions by admitting to any wrongdoing at the scene.
3. Call the Police.
Call the police right away, if a bystander hasn’t already. When the police arrive, confirm that they will be writing an accident report, which can serve as a clear, unbiased description of the event, before memories fade or facts become blurred.
4. Look For Witnesses.
Did anyone see the accident happen? Get their names, addresses, and contact numbers. If you follow up with an accident injury claim, you want to have all perspectives of the accident that you can.
5. Leave the Vehicles.
Wait until the police arrive to move any cars from the position of the accident, unless the vehicles are impeding traffic or creating dangerous situation. Try to preserve the scene of the accident as much as possible.
6. Exchange Information.
Ask for the other drivers’ names, addresses, phone numbers, and insurance information. Make sure the names match on the license and insurance policy. Take pictures of the license plate numbers if you can, and write down the numbers.
7. Call Your Insurance.
No matter who is at fault, your insurance company is responsible for determining the facts of the accident and for making sure that the responsible insurance company covers the cost of your vehicle and necessary medical expenses. No recorded statements until you speak with an attorney.
8. Take Pictures.
If it is safe to do so, take photos of the scene of the accident, including injuries, vehicle damage, skid marks, road damage, and any other relevant images. The more evidence the better.
9. Stay Quiet on Social Media
Change all of your social media sites to ‘private’ and don’t accept new friends while the dispute is being decided. It is best to stop using these sites altogether during this period, as any online postings can be used as evidence against you in the proceedings.
10. Contact a Qualified Attorney.
When you decide to pursue a claim against another driver involved in an accident with you, meet with a skilled lawyer as soon as possible. Discuss the details of your case and find out what your chances may be, before seeking justice for your injuries and damages.
Simon Law Group specializes in accident injury cases, with more than 30 years of experience helping accident victims receive compensation for the traumatic event and subsequent pain and suffering, financial and physical. Contact us today for your free consultation.