What should you do after a car accident? All drivers should know the basics: making sure all parties are clear of damaged cars and oncoming traffic, calling for medical assistance, and notifying the police. But what should you do after a car accident to increase your likelihood of avoiding a financial disaster? Here are the three most important steps to take:
- Documenting the Accident Scene
Even if the police are also investigating the crash and filing a report (something that should be done for any accident in which someone was injured or there was more than a couple hundred dollars’ worth of property damage), you should do what you can to collect information from any other relevant parties and document the accident site. It’s a good idea to keep an info checklist and pen in your glove compartment so that you don’t forget under stress what information you need from the other driver, and having an old-fashioned disposable camera in the car ensures you’ll be able to snap some photos of the damage even if your phone is dead or damaged.
- Getting Prompt Medical Treatment
If you even suspect that you’ve been injured in the accident, it’s important you seek medical attention right away. One of the biggest mistakes drivers make is waiting to see if their injuries will go away on their own; not only does this place you at risk for medical complications, it also weakens your case should you need to file an accident injury claim or accident injury lawsuit down the road.
- Hiring Professional Representation
Some people are skeptical about working with car accident lawyers, but you should know that hiring experienced personal injury lawyers greatly increases your chances of being treated fairly by the other parties involved (and their insurance companies, which is where any money involved usually comes from). If you don’t at least consult an attorney, you may even let your opportunity to get the compensation you need pass due to legal limitations on the timeline of such claims.
Do you have anything to add about what to do or who to turn to after a car accident? Join the discussion in the comments below.