After an auto accident, you should remain at the scene, exchange contact information with the other driver, and call emergency services. This article will further explain what else to do.
Steps to Take If You Are in an Auto Accident
If you were involved in an auto accident and you are not sure what your next steps should be, you should:
Remain at the Scene of the Accident
After an accident, you are lawfully required to remain at the scene. In fact, if any involved party leaves the scene of an accident that results in property damage, injuries, or death, they could face civil and criminal penalties.
In the event the other driver attempts to leave, it is recommended that you remain where you are and follow the next steps.
Pull Your Vehicle Over to a Safe Place
If your vehicle is obstructing traffic or in an unsafe place, you are encouraged to move it to the shoulder of the road or into a parking lot. This way, your vehicle is less likely to get hit by oncoming vehicles.
Call Emergency Services
No matter how minor or serious an accident is, it is a good idea to contact the authorities. In fact, most states require it. When calling them, it is important to relay to the dispatcher if you, your passengers, or anyone else who was involved in the accident suffered injuries so that emergency medical personnel can be sent to the scene.
After a police officer has arrived, remember to not say anything that could potentially cause you to be held 100% liable for the accident. Until you have had the opportunity to speak with a car accident lawyer who can assess your case, it is best not to admit fault. Once an officer arrives, be sure he/she documents everything accurately so that when you are able to obtain a copy of the police report, you will have all the information you need if you are unable to collect it at the accident scene.
While waiting for an officer to arrive or even afterward, you will want to provide your:
- Phone number
- Insurance company name
- Policy number
- Insurance company phone number
- Driver’s license information
- License plate number
You will need this information if you plan on filing a claim with the other driver’s insurance company and even with your own. In the event the other driver is not insured, it is especially important for you to collect information about the driver if he/she was at fault for causing the accident and you intend on suing them for damages.
In addition to exchanging information, it is also a good idea to take pictures of the accident scene and any property damage and/or injuries that were sustained. Photos are especially helpful to have if the other driver is attempting to blame you for an accident they caused or if you need to file a personal injury lawsuit against another driver.
Seek Medical Attention
It is always recommended that an auto accident victim seek medical attention directly after an accident or if they begin to notice any signs of a minor or severe injury. Sometimes, minor symptoms such as a headache or back pain could be an indicator that you suffered a more serious injury. Rather than risk having your condition worsen, it is best you have a physician check you out before this happens.
Consider Contacting a Personal Injury Law Firm
A law firm may be able to help you understand your legal rights and value your damages. If you need to file an insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit, they will be able to assist you with this as well.
Contact Your Insurance Carrier
Some insurance companies require that you report an accident. However, you are encouraged not to admit fault or assume you did not suffer any serious injuries until you have spoken with a doctor. Because many injury symptoms do not show up right away, it is best that you not inform your insurer that you are injury-free.
If You Were Involved in an Auto Accident, Contact Cordisco & Saile LLC for Legal Help
If you were injured in an auto accident and are seeking compensation for medical expenses, lost wages, or even pain and suffering, Cordisco & Saile LLC is here to help you.
Our firm can be reached at (215) 642-2335 and offers free consultations to those who were involved in collisions. We have helped many clients obtain favorable outcomes and are ready to provide you with the legal assistance you might be needing right about now.