There are no lessons in school that teach us what we need to do to protect ourselves after a car accident. The steps you take following an accident can shape how well you can recover from it. Knowing what to do ahead of time can provide you with the help you need when you need it.
The chances that you will wind up in a car accident are higher than you may think. Approximately six million people get in a car accident every year. It is essential to keep a calm demeanor and follow these steps to maximize the compensation you can receive for your recovery.
Report the accident
Immediately following the accident, make sure that everyone is safe. Call an ambulance if someone needs one, but also call the police. A police report is a valuable resource in establishing your compensation claim. Police provide an unbiased description of what happened, which is part of what makes it so useful.
Record the scene of the accident
Take as many photos and videos of the accident from as many angles as possible. Your word can only go so far with insurance companies and lawyers, so make sure you can back up your statements with hard evidence.
Collect personal information
The at-fault driver may be reluctant to offer any personal information. Take the lead and ask them to show you a copy of their license and insurance to take a picture of. Also, collect their license plate and phone number if possible, and the make, model, and color of their car. This information can help you pursue the compensation you need to recover.
See a doctor
Car accidents can leave victims with traumatic brain injuries that can take days for symptoms to appear. A paramedic at the scene may not recognize that you received a brain injury. A doctor can also document your condition immediately following the accident. This documentation can also fight claims that your state was the result of something after your accident.
Call an attorney
Insurance companies hope that victims do not call a lawyer. Without legal representation, victims are more likely to accept a settlement that is far less than they deserve for their injuries. Lawyers know how to negotiate for fair compensation on behalf of their clients.
The sooner you begin acting on your behalf, the sooner you any compensation may arrive. Anything you do to protect your best interests can improve your claim’s outcome, so be sure you are looking out for yourself in your accident.