The shock, anxiety and pain that sets in after an accident can lead to missing some very crucial steps that could help your case and get you the compensation that you deserve. Here are some DO’s and DON’Ts to keep in mind if you are ever involved in a car accident.
Do make sure no one is injured. If someone is seriously injured, immediately call for an ambulance. If there are any reasons to suspect injuries related to the accident, see a physician promptly. Be conscious of emergency room charging you for unnecessary procedures unrelated to injuries suffered in the accident.
Do call the police. They will document the accident and gather facts for legal purposes. If you don’t call the police, it is your word against the other person’s.
Do report the accident to your insurance agent as soon as possible.
Do exchange information with the other parties involved, such as address and phone number. If it’s a car accident get the license plate number; make, model and year of the vehicle; driver’s insurance information; car registration number; driver’s license number.
Do get the names, addresses, and phone numbers of any witnesses. Keep in mind any passengers involved in the accident are NOT witnesses.
Do take pictures of the accident, damages to the vehicle, and the area around the accident.
Do collect any physical evidence that could have caused the accident.
Do gather details from the accident: draw a diagram of the accident; note the date and time; the type of weather; the location of the accident — including any landmarks.Do call an attorney as soon as possible.
Don’t panic. Remain calm and call for help. Don’t leave the scene of the accident. Don’t discuss the accident with anyone and blame anyone, including yourself. Don’t avoid going to the Emergency Room if you are hurt. Don’t wait. The longer you wait to get legal advice, the harder it is to prove your case.
Don’t speak to anybody from the at-fault person’s insurance company before consulting an attorney. If you give a statement, it may be used against you in the future.
Don’t sign any papers given to you by an insurance company or agree to a settlement of your case until you’ve consulted with an attorney.
Don’t stop receiving medical treatments. You should continue receiving treatment for as long as your medical practitioner recommends it. Gaps in treatment, missing doctor’s appointments, and failing to undergo recommended procedures can reduce the value of your claim.
Don’t post any details including pictures related to your car accident to social media.