Have You Been Hurt in a Car Accident? First Steps to Take After an Injury
When a car accident happens, injuries may be severe, and emotions are running high. However, there are important things to do at the scene of an accident. Things that can help you when determining the cause of the accident, and hence the liability. Here is a list of things to do after you have been involved in an accident, in case you are able to do them. If you are too injured, keep in mind that you have to take care of your health and safety first.
1. Stay at the Scene – Never leave the accident scene until it’s appropriate to do so. If you leave, mainly where someone has sustained injuries or was killed, you can face severe criminal penalties for being a hit-and-run driver. However, do make sure that you are in a safe place to avoid being hit by cars or causing another accident.
2. Check on All Drivers and Passengers – Before checking the damage, make sure that everyone is ok. Call 911 and seek medical attention for anyone who needs it. If there is significant property damage, physical injury, or death, you need to call the police. Ask the police to file a report and obtain the name and badge numbers of the responding officers.
3. Exchange Information – Get the names, numbers, addresses, drivers’ license numbers, license plate numbers, and necessary insurance information from all drivers involved. It is also imperative to get personal information from any eyewitnesses.
4. Inform the Insurance Company – Call your insurance company immediately and tell them that you have been in an accident.
5. Take Pictures – Take photographs of any damage to your vehicle as soon as possible after the accident. Photos help your insurance adjuster determine how much you should be compensated for the damage can be helpful in court.
6. Never Accept Responsibility at the Scene of the Accident – Don’t talk about the accident to anyone other than your lawyer, your insurance company, and the police. Do not talk to a representative from another insurance company without the knowledge of your attorney or insurer.
And most importantly, do not accept any responsibility for the accident until you speak to your attorney.