What Should My First Step Be After a Car Accident

When you are involved in a car accident, it’s normal to feel shaken, disoriented, and unsure of what to do. However, following an accident, it’s critical to obtain vital information about the mishap. One important step to take is to keep a checklist of contact information of certain people, such as your insurance provider, so that you can pursue the crucial questions about your accident. In this article, we will highlight important steps to take following a car accident.

What To Do After An Accident

A car accident can leave you devastated and stressed. However, a reliable car accident procedure can save you a lot of frustrations and further damages. Follow this list to ensure this doesn’t happen and that you leave an accident scene with a high chance of receiving a good claim. Most importantly it is crucial to work with knowledgeable and experienced car accident attorneys for strong legal support and ensure you can recover the legal compensation owed to you.

Safety First

The first and obvious thing to do if you are hurt in a car crash is to call the police. They will examine the accident scene and file an official police report for the accident. The police will also ensure you receive immediate medical attention. They may call for an ambulance if you are seriously incapacitated and follow the correct procedures to ensure every safety step is taken. In case someone was under the influence of alcohol or drugs at the time of the accident, let the police know that as well. 

You should always call 911 whether or not there were injuries sustained in the accident. Furthermore, you need to be aware that no insurance company will consider a claim without a police report. Once you have followed this crucial step, then start collecting relevant information.

Gather Information

When it is time to file for a claim, your insurance provider will need hard evidence to consider your claim. They will need details of the other drivers, passengers, witnesses, and pedestrians. Ensure you obtain as much information from them as possible and have it recorded somewhere. Get the names and contact information of everyone. Identify how many people were injured or claimed to be injured in the crash. Did anyone brush off any chances of an injury by saying they are fine? Observe the weather conditions at the time of the accident as this will help ascertain whether the weather elements also contributed to the mishap in any way. 

As much as it depends on you, inspect and note down the conditions of the vehicle or vehicles involved in the accident. Were there any pre-existing conditions of a certain car, like a damaged number or front lights? Note how many drivers were involved in the accident and obtain information about their driving license and vehicle registration numbers. Also, record the make and model of each vehicle. Find out the status of insurance for each vehicle and if the driver’s name is registered with the vehicle. 

If not, ask for the names and details of the vehicle’s owner. If anyone accepted responsibility for the accident, record that as well. Finally, record information about the traffic police officers who handled the incident. Obtain their names and badge numbers.

Record All The Evidence Collected and Keep It Safe

Using your smartphone, ensure you record as much photographic evidence as you can. When it comes to proving liability and filing for compensation after a car accident, there is no piece of evidence that is as indisputable as photos and videos of a crash scene. Get clips and images of the vehicles, the accident scene, the commotion, prevailing weather conditions, and injuries. The damage on the vehicles must also be documented to help pursue compensation for property damages. 

Other details like skid marks, weather elements, road conditions, street signs, and lights are also crucial. Once you are in contact with a car accident lawyer, you’ll need to point out these details. There may be a high chance they faulty street signs, poor road conditions, defective seat belts could be catalysts to the accident.

Call Your Insurance Provider

If you have been involved in a car accident where you may have suffered injuries or property damage, you must call your insurance provider as much as possible. If you have doubts that your insurance provider will not cover your claim, then don’t hesitate to involve car accident lawyer. However, do not delay notifying your insurance company about the accident. Some insurance companies have a policy that requires clients to report an accident within a specific time frame, failure to which would end in a claim being rejected. 

Moreover, you should not, under any circumstances, engage the insurance provider of the other driver. The chances are that they will contact you to ask for statements and details of the accident. Do not engage them or answer any questions from them. If they insist, politely decline and tell them that you will only talk in the presence of your car accident attorney. After that, contact your legal firm for insights and guidance.

Seek Medical Attention

If you are injured in an auto accident, seeking immediate medical attention is critical. If you didn’t end up in an emergency room, it’s still crucial to have you thoroughly evaluated by a medical professional. Certain injuries such as whiplash may not be obvious immediately but may have devastating consequences if left unchecked. If you felt no pain after the mishap, notify your doctor for a thorough evaluation and proper guidance and follow-ups.

Failure to seek medical attention might have serious repercussions if you have hidden injuries that may be visible after some time. Notify your doctor of any symptoms, however slight. Serious back injuries can start as a mild ache but left unchecked; they can cause major health issues. 

Furthermore, if you exhibit serious medical symptoms,  your insurance provider will need proof that the symptoms were professionally diagnosed and treated on time. The conditions were related to the accident.

Reach Out To Your Car Accident Lawyer

The last step to follow after an accident is to contact your car accident attorney. Obtaining legal help is beneficial in ensuring that you have a successful claim and receive a favorable settlement for your damages. Your attorney will examine all the evidence you have at hand and even conduct another independent investigation to ensure you have a strong case. Although this is not a strict requirement, it is a better option that allows you to recover as your lawyers handle the legal processes for you. 

Since an insurance adjuster would do anything to invalidate your claim and kill your chances of receiving a just settlement, car accident attorneys are better placed to deal with ruthless insurance companies and ensure you receive justice. 

An important point to note is that each state has a specific deadline for filing personal injury claims. This deadline is called the statute of limitations, and it takes effect the moment you are injured. If you or your loved one is a victim of a car accident, don’t hesitate to talk to us. We offer free consultation and case evaluation before we begin the journey to a fair settlement.