I Just Had a Car Wreck – What Should I Do?
The actions you take after you’ve been in a car wreck can make a big difference as to whether you get the compensation you deserve. An accident can happen any time, so it’s important to be prepared and to know ahead of time what you can do to protect yourself.
Safety should be your first priority. Calm yourself down so that you can think clearly, check yourself for injuries, and if you are seriously injured call 911 immediately. Turn on your emergency flashers, and if you are not seriously injured consider moving your vehicle to the side of the road.
Report Your Accident.
If anyone is injured or there is any property damage, you should call the police to report the accident immediately. Give the operator information about whether or not anyone is injured , and the precise location of your accident.
Gather Information, and Take Pictures as You Wait.
As you wait for the police to arrive, (and assuming it is safe to do so) collect the important information that you will need during the claims process.
- The name, contact information, driver’s license number, registration number, and insurance information of the other driver(s) involved;
- The make, model, and license plate number of the other car(s) involved;
- The names and contact information of any witnesses to the crash, including passengers in any other vehicles that were involved.You should also record important details, such as the weather, date, and time of the crash. Make a note of damage to the vehicles, the vehicles’positions, and any other relevant factors, like the presence of skid marks on the road. If you have a smartphone or camera with you, take pictures of the accident scene, including the exterior and interior of each car, any injuries, and the surrounding area.
Be careful of what you say while talking with other driver(s) and witnesses. Even a polite “I’m sorry” can come back to haunt you.
Seek Medical Care.
If you have sustained any injuries at all you should seek medical care, whether you think your injuries are serious or not. Even soft tissue injuries like whiplash, bruises, and muscle strain should be evaluated by a medical professional. Don’t wait too long to seek care, as a delay in care may diminish the value of your claim. Make sure you keep a thorough record of all care received, as well as notes about the extent of your injury, your pain, and how you’re recovering.
Report your Auto Accident to Your Insurance Company.
It is important that you report your car accident to your insurance company in a timely manner, because a delay could result in a denial of your claim. Never admit fault or exaggerate your losses when speaking with an insurance adjuster, and don’t agree to give a recorded statement or sign anything before talking to a lawyer.
Call an Experienced Tuscaloosa, Alabama Car Accident Attorney.
If you’ve been injured in a car wreck you want to maximize your recovery. That’s why you need to work with an experienced Alabama auto accident attorney. At Lewis, Lewis & Falkner, we are passionate about helping our clients get the compensation they deserve. Call us today at (205) 553-5353 for your free consultation.