Car accidents happen often, and they can be devastating for victims. Fortunately, there are some things you can do after an accident to improve your chances of recovering compensation for the injuries you suffered.
First, call the police immediately to report the crash. This is crucial, since it can help establish fault later on in a legal case.
Stopping and Exchanging Information
Immediately after a car accident, it is your legal responsibility to stop and exchange information. Failure to do so could result in serious penalties, depending on the type of accident and how it ended.
To begin, get the name and contact information of all drivers involved in the accident as well as any witnesses. Make sure that you don’t simply guess at the names, and verify each person’s correct spelling.
Then, gather their vehicle information and insurance details (company, policy number). Getting all of this data will facilitate an easier claims process.
You should also get the names, driver’s license numbers and vehicle registrations of all other drivers at the scene. Even if they refuse to show you their licenses, continue to ask for their contact, vehicle and insurance information. It is a good idea to take pictures of all this information and email them to yourself. It will help prevent transcription errors and loss of information.
Calling the Police
You should call the police when a car accident occurs. Typically, this is the only way to get a police officer on the scene and file necessary reports for your insurance claim.
In some cases, you may be unsure whether or not to call the police. If you are unsure, the best thing to do is calmly assess the situation and decide for yourself if it is in your best interest to call the police or not.
When you call the police, they will take down information from all parties involved in the crash, including names, addresses, phone numbers, insurance companies and policy numbers, and driver license numbers. They will also write down how the accident occurred and if there were any injuries involved.
This will help you and your lawyer determine who was at fault for the accident. It can also provide important evidence if you choose to pursue a personal injury or property damage claim.
Getting Medical Attention
If you are in an accident, it is important to get medical attention immediately. This is both for your own health and to make sure you don’t have any further injuries that could hurt your case.
Some injuries aren’t apparent right away after a car accident, so it is not uncommon for people to think they don’t need to go to the doctor, or to push off getting care for days or weeks until they have symptoms that might be indicative of something serious.
Bruising, tenderness and discoloration are common symptoms that should be checked by a doctor. Numbness and tingling can also be signs of nerve damage. These should be evaluated by a doctor as well, especially in the neck and back areas.
Keeping a Diary
Keeping a diary can help you remember important details about your car accident, including the injury you suffered and how it has affected your life. These details will be helpful in building your personal injury case.
Many people keep diaries for a variety of reasons, from coping with trauma to writing down their thoughts and dreams. Regardless of what you use your diary for, it is a good idea to write regularly and consistently.
It is also helpful to include details about your emotions. This is particularly useful for people who may have experienced a traumatic event such as bereavement or relationship issues.
You can also include information about your daily activities, such as driving and working. This information will help show how your injuries have impacted your life and how they continue to prevent you from enjoying the things you normally do.