At Atlanta Slip and Fall Attorney– we are personal injury lawyers who want to bring you the best advice to keep them safe on the road. Immediately following a car accident, there can be many things happening at the same time making it easy to lose focus and forget act all the actions that need to happen. Not to mention, depending on the severity of the shock – your ability to think rationally and clearly can be diminished. But there is no time to lose. Here is a list of ten things you need to do after a car crash:
- Get medical care. If you can, call 911 and make sure everyone involved receives the necessary medical attention from professionals.
- Notify the police. Call the police. It is a mistake to assume that “everything will be fixed” or that the driver who now assumes the guilt will later tell the same story to his insurance company. Police officers are trained to document the clash and take statements from those involved. This is critical information when it comes to finding out what really happened.
- Gather the information. Obtain the information of the other driver (s). Enter your name (s), address (es), telephone number (s), and license number (s) as well as your insurance companies and policy number (s). get the information from the police officers. Write down your numbers, number on the police plaque, and write the police report number. Obtain the information of any witness (s). Write down their names and contact information-do this quickly because many witnesses leave without making sure everyone is “okay.”
- Take pictures Almost everyone has a cell phone with a decent camera. If you can, and if it’s safe, take pictures of everything. Pictures of the damage and position of the vehicles before they move can be very important. If you cannot take pictures, ask a passenger or independent witness to do it for you. But again, this should only be done if it can be done with care. After you arrive at your home, take pictures of your injuries as well, including bruises, cuts, or bandages / plaster. Make a backup of the photos so that they are protected in case something happens to the originals.
- Do not talk about guilt. If you were at fault, or if you think it may have been your fault, do not make any statement or say something that can be taken as an acknowledgment of guilt. Even if the other driver admits guilt, do not argue it, you can address an argument. However, you should speak honestly with the police officers and your OWN insurance company describing exactly what happened.
- Take notes. As soon as you can, write everything you remember. Document what happened, the conditions of the road, what was said later, if any citation was given and what injuries, if any, were sustained by those involved. Put these notes, along with all the information you got in a folder so you can have everything in the same place. Draw a sketch or outline of the scene of the accident. It may be months or years before the accident is completely resolved.
- Call your insurance agent. All insurance policies require you to notify your insurance company when you are involved in an accident. Do this soon, the day of or next day, or Monday if the accident happened on the weekend.
- Add to your notes. During the next days and weeks, you will surely make many phone calls and / or exchange several electronic cores. Document everything by noting who said what and the dates and times that were said. Remind yourself not to talk about guilt with someone-especially other insurance representatives of others involved. Make a note of any medical treatment you receive including the dates and names of the doctors and care received.
- Call a personal injury lawyer. You need to protect your rights. Unlike many people, personal injury lawyers spend their professional lives working against insurance companies and protecting the rights of injured victims. An attorney who focuses on your practice of personal injury law is the best suited to assess what needs to be done so that you are fully compensated and protect your interests. Most personal injury lawyers offer free initial consultations.
Be careful. Everything you do and everything you say (including what you say / post on Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, etc.) may come to haunt you later – even if you think you have done it in confidence or published privately in your social media account. If you feel the need to publish things, keep your publications honest and factual, avoid decorating or being frivolous or flowery publications related to your accident.