Your actions immediately after a car accident can play a large role in the settlement outcome, so you want to take the right actions. However, many people don't know what to do or can't think clearly after the shock of the impact. Learn more about what to do after a car accident.
1. Call For Medical Attention (If Applicable)
Car accidents often lead to injury. If someone on-site needs medical attention, call for help before you do anything else. Participants with superficial injuries can visit a doctor later in the day. Despite the extent of your injuries, take the time to visit a doctor. The doctor can examine you for invisible damage and record any noticeable wounds.
Some of the most common injuries as a result of a car accident include:
- Broken bones
- Neck injuries
- Brain injuries and concussion
- Injury/amputation of limbs
- Internal bleeding
- Post-traumatic Stress Disorder
2. Introduce Yourself to Other Participants and Witnesses
If the other parties appear reasonably amicable, approach them for a brief introduction. During your interaction, indicate your intentions moving forward. For example, you may decide to call the police to write a report. After the introduction, wait for the police separately.
If you have witnesses, plead with them to stay to provide a report.
3. Document the Accident Scene
Gather as much evidence from the scene as possible.
Start by taking pictures of all cars involved, getting close-ups of damage, and more distant photos that showcase the car's placement.
After you take pictures, document as many details about the incident as you can in a notebook or the Notes app on your smartphone. Record the order in which the events occurred, including street names, descriptions of the vehicles, descriptions of the drivers, conversations about the accident, time of day, weather conditions, etc...
4. Call a Car Accident Lawyer
Ideally, before speaking with the police and your insurance company, you will speak to a car accident lawyer. The lawyer can guide you in what to tell the authorities. Your first statement will be the first step in a long settlement process if you plan to sue the party responsible. The lawyer will get you the best settlement possible by working together from the start.
Car accidents happen. Hopefully, you were lucky enough to walk away relatively unscathed. After you recover from the accident, your auto accident attorney will fight to get you the settlement you deserve.
To find out more, contact a car accident lawyer.