What to Do After a Car Accident - 4 Tips
Even if you're a careful driver, you may find yourself in a car accident. This can be a very scary situation, and one that impacts you for years to come financially, physically, and emotionally. How can you best react after a car accident to protect your rights and recover as speedily as possible?
Watch What You Say
This might be one of the most important things when it comes to what to do after a car accident. Watch your words and what you say to the police, witnesses, the other driver involved. This is especially important when talking with the insurance company. Even if it's not your fault, you may instinctively want to apologize. However, this could be construed as accepting blame for the accident.
Exchange insurance information with the other driver, and keep calm. Do not, however, admit it was your fault or accept the blame.
Treat the Police as Your Ally
Some people might automatically assume that the police need to be treated with caution after an accident. But the truth is that they are a neutral party, and their thorough report after an accident is a very useful tool in helping you to defend your rights.
When it's your turn to speak to the police officer, make sure that you:
- Tell the cop where you were headed and what direction you were coming from.
- Make a note about any signaling you either used yourself or saw before acting.
- Mention any injuries you immediately notice after the accident.
Pictures can be extremely useful when reviewing the accident later. You don't need anything fancy; pictures you take using your cell phone will often serve just fine. Taking pictures of the accident and the surroundings can help back up your claims later. Here are some important snapshots to take:
- Your car
- The other driver's car
- Witness cars
- Street names
- Length of the turning lane
- Street signs and visibility
Dealing with the Insurance Company vs Hiring a Lawyer
Benefits Of Hiring A Lawyer
- Get more compensation and a better estimate of the overall cost and impact of the accident.
- Most accident lawyers offer free consultations so that you can make a wise decision about how to proceed.
- A lawyer will handle everything for you, including negotiating with the insurance company, which leaves you free to recover.
- A lawyer works for you and is on your side.
Negatives Of Dealing With An Insurance Company
- Insurance companies have one goal: Pay out as little as possible, as quickly as they can.
- They often use tactics to trick you, so as to pay you very little or nothing at all.
- They can also use bully tactics to get you to say certain things you shouldn't be saying or admitting.
For a free consultation or to learn about your legal rights contact Welmaker.