Have you recently been involved in a car accident?
With an average of 5,808,272 car accidents occurring in the U.S each year, it’s no surprise. But, does it matter what you do immediately after an automobile accident?
Yes, it matters. In fact, what you do next can either make or break your legal case. Keep reading for 10 essential steps that you should take after a motor vehicle accident.
2. Get in a Safe Zone
Before you do anything else, if possible, move your vehicle away from oncoming traffic to avoid any additional collisions. Make sure you are stood away from any oncoming traffic to keep yourself and others from further injury.
3. Don’t Take the Blame
Never ever admit fault for a motor vehicle accident, even if you believe you’re to blame. You may not be fully aware of all the facts and circumstances until a thorough investigation has taken place.
Even if you’re pressured to do so, don’t sign any statements, agree to pay for damages or even verbally volunteer to take the blame.
4. Gather Important Info
You must collect the driver’s personal information, such as their name, license number, address, contact details and date of birth. You should also collect information about their vehicle.
For instance their insurance company name, car make, model, year, color and license plate.
5. Speak with Witnesses
Most accidents are witnessed by pedestrians, other drivers or people in nearby buildings. Ask them if they saw what happened and if they’re willing to provide information for the case.
6. Report the Car Accident
Report the accident to the authorities as soon as possible. They may help to remove vehicles from the road and talk to the parties involved.
All of the conversations they have and the observations they make will be filed in their police report. These details will go a long way in the investigation.
You may wonder how to get a car accident police report. The police officer might give you a copy at the site of the crash, or you may have to call them and fill out a form to obtain the record later on. Either way, it’s a simple task.
7. Snapshot Evidence
A picture can say a thousand words, so make sure to take as many photos as possible of the crash scene.
Take pictures of damage to the vehicles, any broken traffic signals, bad road conditions, weather conditions, and even tire marks on the ground. All of these photos can help to tell the story of what happened to cause the accident. Don’t forget to take photos of any visible injuries you have sustained too.
8. Seek Medical Attention
Obviously, the first thing you do after an accident is to check if you or anyone else needs immediate medical attention.
If it doesn’t look like you have any injuries, you may decide not to get medical help. But that would be a mistake as many injuries can take hours, or even days to show. It’s better to get a medical checkup directly after a crash to cover your back both medically and legally.
9. Health Insurance at the Ready
If you need quick medical attention after a motor vehicle accident, you should use your own health insurance to cover the bills. You will be reimbursed with the medical costs later if it finds you were not at fault.
10. Get Legal Help
Legal matters can be confusing. You may not know your rights or what options you have. However, help is at hand!
Our mission is to help you to navigate the complex process of filing a lawsuit for an accident or injury case. If you’ve been in a car accident and are not sure what to do next, contact us for a free case evaluation today!