Did you know that over 3 million people get injured in non-fatal car crashes every year in the United States?
But what happens after a car accident?
If you’re involved in one of these overly common occurrences, follow these tips!
Is Anyone Injured?
The first thing you should do is determine whether you or anyone else in your car has sustained any injuries. If anyone in your car is injured, call 911 immediately and tell the dispatcher your situation as calmly as possible.
It’s also important to check if anyone else involved in the accident is injured. You’ll need to move on to the next step before exiting your vehicle.
Move to Safety
Before leaving your vehicle to check on other people that were involved in the accident, you should move your car to a nearby and safe location. Consider the shoulder of a freeway or a parking lot.
If your car isn’t operating, then remove yourself and any others from the vehicle and move to a sidewalk or shoulder. You should contact the authorities so that they can remove your car from the road.
Anyone who was involved in the accident should exchange contact information as well as insurance information. The amount of information you’re required to give varies by state, but you typically aren’t required to provide any more than contact and insurance.
Beyond that, it’s recommended that you don’t interact with other drivers in a car accident to avoid guilt or blame.
Some drivers may try to persuade you not to alert your insurance company or the authorities, offering just to pay you cash to cover the cost of the repair. This is highly discouraged, because there may be more damage to the car than is visible.
And some injuries are masked by adrenaline at first and don’t manifest until later. Always exchange contact and insurance information.
To the best of your abilities, you should document the crash by taking photos of your own vehicle and any damage.
If there are witnesses to the accident, you should ask them to stay until a law enforcement officer can take their account. If you interact with any law enforcement officers, document their name, their phone number, and ask for the police report identification number.
As soon as you have the time, you should write down or voice record your recollection of the events.
Contact a Lawyer If Necessary
If the other driver was at fault and you sustained any degree of injury due to the car accident you should consider talking to a personal injury lawyer.
Many drivers hesitate to involve lawyers because they don’t think their injury is severe enough. They would rather deal with the minor pain than deal with the possibility of filing a suit and spending time in court.
However, it’s important to remember that just because an injury is small doesn’t mean it won’t last or get worse. This informational article can help you prepare to meet with a personal injury lawyer.
File Insurance Claims
Remember, it can be tempting to avoid contacting insurance agencies to avoid paying deductibles and experiencing an increase in your premium. But the damage and potential injuries are typically much costlier than they initially appear.
File a claim with your insurance and provide the other driver’s contact and insurance information so that the claim can be processed through the appropriate channels.
The Importance of Knowing What Happens After a Car Accident
In the moments directly after a car accident, it can be difficult to think straight. But what happens after a car accident is vital to everyone being safe. Follow these tips for success.
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