What to Do After a Car Accident
The Dressie Law Firm can shed light on what the laws says on what to do after a car accident. Book a free consultation with us today for more information.
What To Do After a Car Accident: All You Need To Know
When you get in a car accident, you may feel confused, scared, or understandably angry. You may also sustain physical injuries, property damage, and financial losses. In such a difficult and never-anticipated event, you may have no idea what to do or how to behave.
This is why it’s important to get familiar with what should be done following a traffic accident well in advance.
In a nutshell, these are the most important things you should do after a car accident:
Call the police and get a police report
Exchange your details with the other drivers involved in the accident
Take videos and pictures of the scene of the accident, the vehicles involved, and your injuries.
Consult a car accident lawyer
Initiate the claims process
Let’s look at these in a bit more detail.
What To Do After a Car Accident: Step-by-Step
What you do at the accident scene and onward has a significant impact on whether or not you can recover compensation.
Here is a step-by-step guide to what to do after a car accident:
Assess Your Injuries
First, you should check yourself and your passengers for injuries. If anyone is hurt, call 911 or ask anyone nearby to do it for you. If you have serious injuries, do not move. Wait for emergency services to arrive.
Relocate to Safety
If you can, move your car to the side of the road or a safe place. If not, get out of the car and find a safe spot away from traffic. Turn on your hazard lights and use road flares or reflective emergency triangles from your emergency kit to warn other drivers.
Contact Emergency Services
If you and the others involved are okay, contact a non-emergency police number to report the accident. However, you should still seek medical attention after the accident to make sure everything is really okay.
Once the police arrive, they will write a police or accident report that documents the facts of the incident, including the date, time, location, cause, and drivers and motor vehicles involved. The report will also include statements from witnesses and evidence. You will need this report for your auto insurance claim and any legal action. Ensure you take the police officer’s name and badge number.
You should exchange your contact and insurance information with the other car driver. Get the other driver’s insurance company, name, address, phone number, policy number, driver’s license number, and license plate number. You should also give them your information. Do not admit fault or apologize for the accident, as this could affect your claim. You should also avoid discussing the details of the accident with the other driver or the bystanders.
Document the Incident
Take pictures and videos of where the accident occurred and the damage caused to the involved cars. You should capture the position of the cars on the road from multiple angles. Also, take notes of the weather and road conditions.
Make sure to take pictures of skid marks or debris, street signs or signals, and any injuries you or anyone else suffered. These photos and videos will help you determine liability and support your claim.
Consult a Car Accident Attorney
Before moving forward, it’s crucial to consult an attorney. From this point on, things will get complicated and require legal knowledge and negotiation skills. An experienced car accident attorney will give you personalized legal counsel about what should be done and how to do it.
A lawyer may also be better suited to estimate your damages and losses, such as
Medical bills and expenses
Rental car expenses
Initiate the Claim Process
At some point after the accident, you will need to notify your insurance company, which in turn will notify the other driver’s insurer. After investigating the case and preparing your case, your lawyer will file a claim with the at-fault driver’s insurance company.
The insurance company will assign an adjuster to investigate the accident, determine liability, and decide on a settlement amount if your claim is valid. Your lawyer will negotiate with the adjuster for a fair settlement.
You must know that insurance companies will always try to avoid paying you. An experienced attorney may be your only chance at settling out of court. However, if negotiations fail, you can take your claim to court.
Do you need further legal assistance in Atlanta, GA? Reach out to us at the Dressie Law Firm today.
How an Attorney Can Assist After a Car Accident
Consulting a car accident attorney is very important after a car accident. They can handle the insurance claim process and relieve you of all the involved paperwork and back-and-forths.
Here’s how a lawyer can help you after a car accident:
Investigating the car crash: Car accident attorneys conduct a comprehensive crash investigation to gather crucial evidence like witness statements and surveillance footage. We may also consult with officers and experts to:
Reconstruct the accident scene
Obtain and analyze medical records
Evaluate the accident scene
Obtain traffic camera footage
Handling the claims process: Insurance companies prioritize their interests and financial gain. Having a skilled lawyer representing you ensures you receive fair compensation. Car accident attorneys handle all communications and negotiations with the insurance company and its adjuster.
Calculating future medical costs: Beyond current medical expenses, car accident injuries often require long-term treatment. Personal injury attorneys can itemize these costs to determine your settlement. These often encompass the following:
Present medical bills
Pain and suffering
Future medical expenses
A detailed breakdown of damages strengthens your case.
Negotiating fair settlements: Insurance companies frequently offer low settlements to avoid large payouts. Your lawyer will negotiate for a fair settlement and take your case to court if necessary. While the insurance company may refuse to pay you, they may be forced to settle out of court to
The Dressie Law Firm Can Help You
Contact us today to schedule your free consultation!