Auto Accidents are scary. You find yourself on the side of a road frantically rummaging through your glove compartment for paperwork, late to work, and unsure of how you are going to pay for the damages. It becomes easy to forget things. Here’s are some tips to guide you through the accident process and ensure optimal results. Following these steps will help you with your medical and financial recovery.
Step 1: Call 911
Many people believe calling 911 for a small auto accident is excessive, but it’s not. I REPEAT ALWAYS CALL 911. It is only in your best interest. It is imperative for you to retrieve a police report because it will help your attorney settle the case later on, no matter how large or small the accident.
- Assess if you have any injuries
- If you are able to move call 911
- If you are unable to move, wait for someone to come to your aid and have them call 911.
By calling the police you will likely get a police report. Obtaining a police report helps avoid the game of “he said, she said” when dealing with adjusters. It also solidifies the facts of the accident and who is really at fault.
Step 2: Take Pictures and Videos
Make sure whether it’s you, or someone else, that someone takes pictures and videos of the accident. Pictures should include:
- Your injuries
- The vehicle (damages)
- Relevant nearby signs
- No u-turn, yield, stop signs, surrounding environment.
Also take pictures of any witnesses or parties involved, along with collecting their insurance and driver’s license information. Never allow someone to leave the scene before all of this is done.
What I recommend is to take a video of exactly how and where the accident happened. Videotape the street you drove on, the weather conditions, the street signs, and end with the video on your accident and show any injuries or witnesses at the scene of the incident. Lastly, videotape witnesses and get their statement if they are willing to give it.
All of these pictures and videos are hard evidence of what happened and are very valuable to your case.
Step 3: Handling Serious Injuries
If you have a serious injury and feel as if you cannot drive, TAKE AN AMBULANCE! Do not worry about the cost. Once your case is settled you WILL be reimbursed for the cost of the ride. Taking an ambulance will guarantee a police report and medical report. Above all else it’s best for your health and safety.
Step 4: Keep Track of all Paperwork
Keep a file of all police reports, medical reports, hospital bills, personal information of both parties, insurance information, and other relevant records. Even if you don’t think it’s important it could be helpful to your attorney, so keep track of everything. Even matters such as text messages between parties affiliated with the incident. Every little thing should be kept on record and relayed to your attorney.
We hope you never have to use these steps, but if you do, stay calm and follow these guidelines. If you follow each of these steps, then we are confident you will be able to recover all costs from the guilty party. Stay safe and remember, the law is on your side.
If you want a packet with the details of what to do then reach out to us. The packet is small enough to keep in your glove compartment.