Your Ultimate Guide to Handling Car Accidents
Being involved in a car accident is really stressful and there are a lot of questions that come to mind once it happens. The important things you have to keep in mind after a car accident is to inspect yourself and your passengers for injuries, get to a safe area as much as possible, call 911, wait for help, share information, document the incident, and notify your insurance company. If you are injured, it is best to contact 911 or ask someone else to do so, and if you are seriously injured, don’t attempt to move, just wait for the emergency personnel. You can seek the help of a bystander if you don’t have access to your phone.
Pull your car to the side of the road if your car is still safe to drive if there is a hazard, otherwise just leave it where it is and get yourself to a safe place. This is to ensure that the police will be able to determine who is at-fault in the car accident. In majority of states, car insurance is fault-based, wherein if there is a car crash in a tort or fault, the insurer of the at-fault driver will help in paying for medical expenses, repairs, and other losses like lost wages and pain and suffering through the driver’s liability. Regardless if it is a major collision or a minor fender-bender, it is crucial to call the police because this is legally required. The police responders will document the scene and fill out an accident report. You can go to the nearest police station and file a report if the police can’t come tot he incident scene. It is important to turn off your car engine, turn on your hazard lights, and warn other vehicles by using road flares so they can slow down. Once you are assured that you and your passengers are uninjured, exchange contact and insurance details with the other driver. The other driver’s full name and contact information, driver’s license, license plate number, vehicle information (type, color, and model), insurance company and policy number, and the location of the accident.
Documentation of the accident is important to help in protecting yourself by identifying the police officers by getting their names and badge numbers, get a copy of the accident report, take pictures of your vehicle in all angles to show damage done to both cars, and talking to witnesses to get their names and contact details. Hiring a car accident lawyer can help you in the gathering of evidence, submission of required evidence, and to represent you before the insurance company or before the court so you can get the maximum compensation benefit for your claim.