5 Things You Need to Know if You’re Involved in an Auto Accident
Most people believe that auto accidents only happen to other people, but statistics show that the average driver is involved in three or four car wrecks during the course of a lifetime. Fortunately, the vast majority of these aren’t fatal, but they nonetheless have the potential to seriously disrupt your life. For instance, if you need to take time off work due to injuries caused by an accident, you could find yourself in deep financial difficulty as you struggle to keep current on household expenses. Out-of-pocket expenses such as medical care and prescriptions also have a way of adding up.
See Your Doctor as Soon as Possible
Although you can’t avoid all of the unpleasantness associated with auto accidents should you see your personal physician as soon as possible or visit your local emergency room. Some injuries aren’t apparent in the hours following an accident, so it’s essential that you get yourself checked out.
Don’t Admit to Guilt
The moments immediately following a car accident are generally extremely tense, and it can be easy to speak without thinking. It’s best to say as little as possible during this time, and keep in mind that even seemingly innocuous comments may be misconstrued. Avoid any speculation concerning the cause of the accident, including assigning blame to the other party. What you should be doing during this time is using your smartphone to photograph the crash site and collecting names and contact information for all witnesses.
File a Police Report
Your insurance company probably won’t be able to move forward with processing your claim if you don’t file a police report, and the report can also serve as a valuable piece of evidence if it becomes necessary to litigate your case. Many people erroneously believe that fender benders and other minor accidents that don’t merit police response don’t require a police report, but this generally isn’t true. Hedge your bets and go to your local police department and file a report there.
Be Circumspect on Social Media
Even if your social media page settings are private with the exception of friends and family, it’s in your best interests to practice extreme circumspection in regards to your accident. The insurance company will be looking at your social media to see if they can find any evidence that you’ve been exaggerating the extent of your injuries. Be careful about who photographs – an innocent picture of you enjoying yourself at a backyard barbecue or family wedding could be taken as evidence that your injuries aren’t as severe as you claim.
Keep Impeccable Records
Keep careful track of everything related to the accident, such as doctor visits, vehicle repair expenses, and lost hours of work no matter how minor. Your lawyer will use this information to craft an effective case. It’s also important for victims of auto accidents to have skilled, experienced legal representation. Please feel free to contact our office at your convenience for more information on how we can help accident victims get the compensation they deserve.