How to Proceed in the Aftermath of a Car Accident
Regardless of the circumstances surrounding an accident or the severity of the accident, there are few experiences more difficult and traumatic than being involved in an automobile accident. There are frequently many missteps that are made in the immediate aftermath of an accident, so a thorough knowledge of how to proceed in such an event is crucial. It is very difficult to recall the proper steps immediately due to the shock that may have been caused by the accident, so make sure that you do not act hastily as you may make a mistake that will cost you in the long run. One of the most important steps to take is to consult an experienced personal injury firm, such as the AA Accident Attorneys personal injury specialists.
File a Report with the Proper Authorities
If the authorities did not file a report at the scene of the incident, make sure that you file one with the appropriate agency. It is important for you to have an objective party write down all of the facts relevant to the accident, preferably at the scene of the accident. When filing the report, do not offer any statements of apology or contrition, as these may be interpreted as a sign that you caused the accident. Even if you are simply being polite, your statement could easily be misinterpreted and used against you. Take great care to simply present the facts of the accident and nothing more.
Take Down the Relevant Information of All Parties Involved
If it is possible that you can take down the personal information of the involved parties at the scene of the accident, make sure that you do so. You should collect all of the relevant information of any drivers involved in the accident as soon as possible, including:
* Insurance information
* License plate number
* Driver’s license number
You should also try to find anyone who may have witnessed the accident, and if you do, make sure that you write down their names, addresses and phone numbers, as they may be called upon to verify any of the details of the accident.
Document Evidence Through Photographs
Take pictures of the accident scene and any damage that has been done to the automobiles involved. If there are any injuries to anyone involved in the accident, take pictures of that as well. This should be done fairly easily given the preponderance of high-quality phone cameras possessed by drivers. This is an important method of documentation that may serve you well in a personal injury case.
Consult Your Attorney Before Giving a Statement
You should always allow your attorney to review any written statements you make before you sign them, and you should never submit to a recorded statement. Many harmless statements can be
misinterpreted and then used against you, so always take great care when you are speaking with an insurance adjuster.
Seek Medical Attention
You should also seek medical attention as soon as you are able, making sure that you fully detail any injuries you may have suffered and any pain that you are experiencing. Giving your doctor as much information as possible will not only help in your treatment and recovery, it will also serve as documentation in the event of a personal injury case.