For many of those who suffer serious injuries as a result of negligence in a car accident, understanding the steps that come next can be confusing. The shock of the accident is still present, and you’re not quite sure how you can help your potential claim.
Before you move forward with any kind of claim or potential lawsuit, it’s imperative you follow these seven steps immediately following the accident. Taking these steps gives you the highest potential of pursuing a claim or lawsuit successfully.
1. Move Your Vehicle (and Yourself) to Safety
When the crash occurs in the middle of the road, it can leave you and all others involved susceptible to the additional danger of other vehicles passing by. If your vehicle is still operable, move it to the side of the road. If your vehicle cannot move, wait until the road is completely clear and ensure you and the passengers in your vehicle move to the side of the road.
This keeps you all safe from other dangers—especially if the accident occurs on a busy highway.
2. Information You Need to Exchange
No matter how you feel about the situation, you need to speak with the other party you feel is responsible for the crash. Don’t assume fault; rather, you simply want to ask for the necessary information to file a claim. This can include, but is not limited to the following:
- The other driver’s license
- The other driver’s insurance company’s contact information
- The other driver’s contact information
- The witnesses’ contact information
You will provide all of this to your insurance company and legal team to help build your case.
3. Report the Accident to the Authorities and Your Insurance Company
Once you’re able to, report the accident to the local authorities and your insurance provider. Many people don’t feel as though the police need to get involved, but with significant property damage and potential injuries, this is an imperative step. It can be helpful in pursuing rightful compensation as the police report and your initial statements to your insurance company can serve as beneficial evidence.
4. Talk with Witnesses at the Scene of the Accident
If there are any witnesses at the scene who may have watched as the accident occurred, ask for their statement and their contact information. See if they’d be willing to give the insurance company their side of the story to help build your case.
5. Take Photos for Evidence
Taking photos can be very helpful in building a case. The scene of the accident, potential road dangers, damage to your vehicle, damage to the other vehicle, visible injuries, and more; these can all be beneficial to helping you move forward.
6. Get Medical Treatment
Whether you see a paramedic at the scene of the accident or you make a plan to go to the emergency room, getting medical treatment is imperative. You can begin treatment, but you can also get medical records you can use to help show the losses you’ve experienced.
7. Speak with a Lawyer About Your Rights
Discussing your situation with a lawyer gives you a clearer idea about what rights and options you have moving forward. You can better understand what to expect in the process and have your rights protected by someone who understands the underhanded tactics many insurance adjusters try to use to limit liability.
At Dismuke Law, you’ll find committed and dedicated Lakeland car accident lawyers who are focused on helping you every step of the way. Let us be the advocates you need to move forward after a serious accident caused by negligence.
Call our firm at (863) 292-6922 today and speak with one of our team members about your potential legal options. We offer free consultations so you can get answers without financial concerns.