Typically, hearing about an accident only steals much attention if it happens to you or happens because of you. It may cause you a permanent injury or a loss of loved ones. Many drivers fail to follow the rules and traffic signals, leading to destructive tragedies.
However, the first concern is getting legal help to recover compensation when you’re injured in a car collision. Consulting a qualified attorney regarding your potential lawsuit is even more important if another driver is responsible for distracted driving.
As per the Insurance Information Institute‘s recent publication, the steps can guide you in handling the aftermath of a car accident.
Steps to Handle the Aftermath of a Car Accident
Step 1: Ensure that you’re Safe
Switch on all the hazard lights to alert other drivers. Then, check yourself and others for possible injuries. If you or people with you are injured, call emergency services for medical attention. If it’s unsafe to move your car, stay on the seat with belts fastened until help arrives.
Step 2: Reach out to Law Enforcement
The next step is to notify the relevant authority as soon as possible. You need to do it even if the accident seems minor. Once the police arrive on the scene, they will document important details and provide an objective account of the incident.
Ensure maximum cooperation with the responding officer by providing accurate information. Also, obtain the officer’s name and badge number. Remember to request a copy of the police report for your records. You may need it for filing a lawsuit or an insurance claim.
Step 3: Gather More Information after the Crash
You must exchange information if you think the other party is involved in a collision. Collect their name, contact details, insurance information, and license plate number. In addition, gather contact information from any witnesses present at the scene. Their statements may prove valuable when determining fault or supporting your case.
Step 4: Photograph the Scene
Take photos or make videos of the accident scene by using your smartphone. Ensure you capture multiple angles of the vehicles involved, visible damages, skid marks, road conditions, and any relevant traffic signs or obstructions. This will serve as visual records you can use as evidence later and help reconstruct the events accurately.
Step 5: Contact Your Insurance Company
The sooner you contact your insurer, the more your chances of getting the compensation. Provide them with the necessary details and be honest and accurate in your account of the incident. Follow their instructions for filing a claim and keep all communication records. This may include claim numbers and adjuster names. Also, you can provide insurance to strengthen your case if you have supporting documents.
Step 6: Seek Medical Attention
Some injuries may have delayed symptoms, so seeking medical attention after an accident is crucial, even if you believe your injuries are minor. A medical professional can properly assess your condition. Keep a record of medical examinations, treatments, prescriptions, and medical bills related to the accident. These records will support your insurance claim and legal case if necessary.
Step 7: Consult with an Accident Attorney
Consider consulting with a personal injury attorney if you experience significant injuries or encounter difficulties in the insurance claim process. They can provide guidance, protect your rights, and ensure you receive fair compensation. An attorney will not only navigate the legal complexities and negotiate with insurance companies but also represent your best interests if the accident leads to legal proceedings.
Handling the aftermath of a car accident requires a calm and systematic approach. Following this step-by-step guide, you can prioritize safety and seek legal guidance. Remember, seeking help and support is essential during this challenging time.