You were just involved in a car accident. It wasn’t your fault and now you’re at the scene wondering how in the world this could have happened when you were driving safely. You always drive safely. Now you’re not sure if your car is able to drive from the scene or what you should do. Here are some tips that lawyers wish they could tell you at the scene of the crash:
Take Photographs After a Car Accident
We often forget that our phones have become powerful tools (able to take photos and videos with a simple button). Take photos of the collision scene to document where the cars were at impact. Take photos of the other driver’s license plate, insurance card, and driver’s license (in case they give you inaccurate or false information).
Get Witness Information
If other people stop or witness the collision, get their name, number and address. Even if you don’t think you need it, get it. Sometimes people change their story later about how the collision happened. You want your attorney to have access to potentially helpful (or damaging) testimony from the beginning of your case.
Call the Police
It is not always necessary to call the police, but in these situations, it’s a good idea:
- If you feel threatened. If you feel threatened by the other driver you should call the police and allow them to help you exchange information.
- If your car needs to be towed. If you are unable to drive your car safely from the scene, call the police and get your vehicle safely towed from the scene
- If you are feeling pain at the scene. An officer may ask you if you need an ambulance to get to the hospital. If you need to go and can’t drive your vehicle there or are advised not to, be smart. Do not put yourself or others at risk.
Get Medical Help
If you are hurt, get help from your local Emergency Room or Urgent Care. Pay attention to how you are feeling over the next 24-72 hours. Often times, your adrenaline is running as a result of being part of a traumatic experience. Some aches and pains may not register right away, but you may start feeling aches that are different and nagging.
If you have continued pain and problems, seek help with a local doctor, physical therapist, chiropractor or orthopedic. Bonus tip: keep your appointments so that you get better sooner!
Call an Attorney After a Car Accident
If you are hurt, you should call a car accident attorney. Insurance companies know that, if you are without an attorney, the company can take advantage of you. They can talk you out of getting the right medical care and lowball you on offers for your case. Ultimately, they know you will not be successful bringing an action against them or their driver in court by yourself. By yourself, you have little to no leverage to get what is fair and just for your injuries.