When you have been involved in a car accident, you may be feeling a range of emotions from shock to anxiety. It is essential to stay calm and think clearly in order to take the appropriate steps following the accident.
While you may be aware of some things that you need to do to protect your rights and interests, there are also some things that you should never do. These things can potentially jeopardize your case and make it more difficult to receive the compensation you deserve.
This article discusses the top seven things you should never do after a car accident. Read on to learn more.
1. Do Not Leave the Accident Scene
Car accidents are a severe issue that you should never take lightly. Leaving the scene without following proper procedure is not only wrong but a crime in many states that could cost you dearly.
You are required by law to stop your vehicle if you have been involved in an accident that resulted in injury or property damage. If you fail to do so, you could be charged with a hit and run.
Leaving the scene of an accident can also make it more difficult to prove what happened and who was at fault. If you leave, the other driver may claim that you caused the accident and fled even if you were not responsible for the crash.
2. Do Not Admit Fault
You may be tempted to apologize to the other driver or take responsibility for the accident, but it is vital to resist this urge. Anything you say at the scene of an accident can be used against you in a court of law.
Even if you think you may have caused the accident, do not say so. It is best to wait until you have had a chance to speak with an attorney before making any admissions.
3. Do Not Forget to Exchange Information
Ensure you get the other driver’s name, contact information, insurance company, and policy number. You should also exchange information with any witnesses to the accident.
If you are badly injured and cannot collect this information, have a passenger or bystander do it for you. This information will be important if you need to file a claim with the other driver’s insurance company.
4. Don’t Delay Calling 911
One of the biggest mistakes you can commit after being involved in a car accident is failing to call the police. Many people think that they can handle the situation independently, but this is rarely the case.
Calling the police is essential for several reasons. First, they will create an official report of the accident, which can be used as evidence if you need to file a lawsuit.
Second, the police can help clear the accident scene and direct traffic if necessary. This can help to prevent further accidents from happening.
And finally, the police can provide you with medical assistance if necessary. If you are injured, it is crucial to have a professional assess your injuries as soon as possible.
5. Don’t Talk to Your Insurance without Speaking to an Attorney First
After being involved in a car accident, you will likely need to file a claim with your insurance company. However, it is essential to speak with an attorney before doing so.
Your insurer may try so hard to minimize the amount of money they pay out on your claim or even deny it outrightly. An experienced lawyer can help to ensure that you receive the maximum amount of compensation possible.
6. Don’t Ignore Your Injuries
Even if you think your injuries are minor, it is crucial to see a doctor as soon as possible after an accident. Some injuries, such as whiplash, may not exhibit symptoms until days or weeks after the initial accident.
If you wait too long to seek medical attention, the insurance company may argue that your injuries are unrelated to the accident.
It is essential to get a professional medical opinion as soon as possible so that you can start the process of recovery and get the compensation you deserve.
7. Don’t Forget to Document the Accident
If you plan on filing an insurance claim or a personal injury lawsuit, it is essential to document the accident. This can be done by taking pictures of the accident scene, getting the contact information of witnesses, and keeping track of your medical expenses.
8. Don’t Neglect the Aftermath
While a car wreck is traumatic and difficult to deal with, the most challenging part usually comes after the accident. You may be dealing with injuries, property damage, missed work, and more.
It is essential to take care of yourself and your family after an accident. This means getting the medical attention you need, taking time off of work if necessary, and speaking with an attorney to ensure that your rights are protected.
You should also register your insurance claim as quickly as possible. Many insurance companies have time limits for filing claims, so it is vital to act quickly.
And finally, don’t forget to take care of your mental health. The stress of being in an accident can be overwhelming, and it is important to seek professional help if you are struggling to cope.
No one ever expects to be in a car accident, but it’s important to remember these eight things when it happens.
By following these tips, you can minimize the negative impacts of an accident and make the process easier for yourself and everyone involved.
Have you been in a car accident? What was your experience like? Let us know in the comments below.