Car accidents are a regrettable reality of modern life. They can lead to a spectrum of challenges, both immediate and long-term. These range from physical injuries to insurance claims and lawsuits. There are facts to remember if you need to hire a lawyer and essential evidence you should gather. In this article, we provide six vital tips after a car accident survival to guide you through the aftermath.
1. Consult An Attorney
Many of these incidents involve significant damages, severe injuries, or contested liabilities. All these scenarios and more may necessitate legal expertise. A seasoned car accident attorney can demystify complex legal processes and terminology. As matters progress, they can ensure that your rights remain protected. They can provide guidance on potential claims, collect the necessary evidence, and negotiate with insurance companies. If matters aren’t fully resolved, they can become your voice in court if necessary. Legal assistance can mean the difference between a favorable outcome and a prolonged, draining ordeal.
When choosing an attorney, it’s wise to look online for one that’s nearby. This way, they’ll be familiar with the local roads, laws, and court system. It’ll also be easier to have face-to-face chats and drop off signed documentation. The website of a car accident lawyer may display client testimonials, and details of money retrieved from successful claims. You can also read helpful FAQs, and learn about the specific cases they handle. You can request a free confidential consultation, and only pay fees if they win your case.
2. Prioritize Immediate Safety After a Car Accident Survival
Unquestionably, safety is paramount after a car accident survival. The initial moments following the collision can be chaotic and fraught with confusion. There can also be continuing danger from oncoming traffic. If your car is still operational, move it to a secure location. This will minimize the risk of secondary accidents, which can be even more dangerous. Move it slowly and carefully to the side of the road or a nearby parking space.
Turn on your hazard lights, and if available, place emergency triangles or cones to warn oncoming vehicles. Perhaps it’s not possible to move your car, or you suspect it may be unsafe to do so. In this scenario, remain inside with your seatbelt fastened until professional help arrives. The goal is to ensure both your safety and that of other road users.
3. Seek Medical Attention
It’s not uncommon for accident victims to underestimate their injuries. Adrenaline, shock, and stress can mask pain and discomfort. However, neglecting medical attention can have dire consequences. Some injuries, especially internal ones, might not manifest symptoms immediately. By delaying a medical check, you could exacerbate conditions and complicate recovery. It’s wise to seek a swift diagnosis so that you can receive any necessary treatment as quickly as possible.
Moreover, timely medical documentation becomes an irrefutable record of injuries sustained from the accident. This can prove indispensable during insurance or legal claims. So even if you feel relatively fine, a prompt medical assessment is crucial. You should also keep all documentation relating to medical costs and treatment, as this could support any claim for financial compensation.
4. Document Everything After a Car Accident Survival
Once you’ve ascertained everyone’s safety, shift your focus to documentation. Use your phone or camera to capture various angles of the scene. This should include vehicle damages, car debris, road signs, intersections, traffic signals, and weather/road conditions. These photos can provide a visual chronicle of the accident’s circumstances. By taking photos of any injuries you sustained, you can reinforce any later claim for pain, suffering, or trauma.
Additionally, pen down your recollection of events leading up to the crash. This is because memories might become hazy over time. Gather the personal and insurance details of all involved parties. Also, collect contact information for any eyewitnesses to the event. Their later statements may further solidify your account of what happened and why. Finally, collate all other documents that reflect the costs you’ve incurred. They should include details of lost wages or house modifications following disability. If you’ve paid for physical or emotional rehabilitation, include these invoices too.
5. Never Admit Fault Or Apportion Blame
Emotions run high in the wake of an accident, and it’s human nature to want to diffuse tension. This may involve apologizing, regardless of whose fault it was. However, any statements made at the accident scene can be misconstrued. In turn, they could be later used against you to reduce the power of your claim.
If you become aggressive or assign blame, this behavior will do nothing to support your case. Stick to factual and honest recounting when speaking to the other parties or law enforcement. Fault determination, with all its nuances, is best left to the professionals. They’ll assess the scene, review witness accounts, and study other evidence later on.
6. Be Wise With Insurance Companies
Your insurer is a key player in the post-accident process. Reporting the accident to them promptly ensures they’re armed with real-time facts. In turn, this can facilitate smoother claim processing. It might be tempting to give them a detailed account. However, it’s best to stick to objective details without personal interpretations. As you engage with your insurance company, maintain a record of all conversations, emails, and, claim numbers.
Also, take note of the names of representatives you converse with. This organized documentation can expedite matters and also come in handy if discrepancies arise. The insurance company for the other party may be reluctant to pay the required settlement figure. As a result, they may seek a statement from you, and try to twist your words. It’s wise to let your lawyer be the communicator with this party. They’ll be familiar with their tactics, and more able to negotiate a fair compensation figure.
Car Accident Survival Guide
Whilst accidents can be unexpected and disorienting, it makes all the difference if you have a well-informed plan for the aftermath. As you traverse the challenges that follow, stay calm and follow the advice of your personal injury lawyer. In turn, you can convert an overwhelming situation into a manageable one. You’ll be able to focus on making a full physical recovery, while your lawyer seeks fair compensation. We hope this car accident survival guide helps.