Car accidents can be exciting events but not in the way a roller coaster is exciting or the way a vacation abroad is exciting. Instead, they can be frightening, sometimes extremely so when they’re catastrophic. They happen so fast and they’re often unexpected.
As a result, you can be flooded with adrenaline and you can find your mind and heart racing and your body shaking. You can be so surprised by the sudden, violent event, that you don’t know what to do next. Hopefully, you’re reading this before you’re in a car accident and you can remember this advice so if you are in one in the future, you’ll know what to do.
Just After a Crash
When it comes to car crashes, there is definitely a wrong way and a right way to go about it. If you immediately say the accident was all your fault, it could jeopardize your personal injury claim. Or, if you flee the accident scene (even if you’re not at-fault for the crash), you could find yourself facing criminal charges for a hit and run. So, what do you do after an accident? Here’s our advice:
- Make sure you stay at the scene – do not drive away!
- See if anyone is injured and if so, call an ambulance.
- If it’s safe to do so, move your vehicle out of traffic so it doesn’t cause another accident with approaching motorists. However, take pictures of the accident scene first with your cellphone so they can be used as evidence in your personal injury claim.
- Do NOT say the accident was your fault, even if you think it was. If you do this, it could have a negative impact on the claims process. Instead, let the insurance company investigate the crash and let them arrive at their own conclusion.
- Be sure to call the police so they can file a police report. Police reports are important in car accident claims.
- Exchange your license, registration, license plate, and contact information with the other driver(s) in the accident.
- Seek medical attention promptly and do not wait more than 72 hours. If you delay, the insurance company could argue that you were “not that hurt.” Even if you don’t have pain on day one, that doesn’t mean you aren’t injured. Adrenaline can mask the pain from an accident for hours or even days.
- Do NOT give a recorded statement to an insurance company without seeking legal advice from a personal injury attorney.
We hope you found this information useful. If you need to file a car accident claim, contact The Law Offices of Jason K.S. Porter at (904) 701-0591 for a free consultation. **Consultation fees may apply to family law consultations.