You’ve been involved in a car accident, and you’re not sure what to do. Before you make any decisions, consider calling an personal injury lawyer to help you get through this confusing and overwhelming time in your life. There’s so much to be said about being involved in a car accident, from what you should do immediately following the crash to how you should handle your medical treatment, a rental car, and even the insurance agency. The first thing you should do is call the police. Any good personal injury lawyer will tell you an accident report filed by the police on-scene is invaluable, but what do you do after that?
See A Doctor
Don’t be the kind of person who assumes you needn’t seek medical treatment because you don’t have any visible injuries. It’s confusing following an accident, and you might not feel any pain other than some shock and some shakiness following such a scary situation. You might look around and realize that you’re not bleeding nor are any of your bones broken, and you don’t feel any pain at the moment. You don’t need a doctor, right? Wrong. Your personal injury lawyer will tell you to seek medical treatment regardless.
Many injuries sustained in car crashes are internal, and you might not feel them. The longer you leave them untreated the worse they become. A simple internal injury found right away might be quickly repaired and easily fixed. One that goes undetected for a few days or even weeks continues to get worse, and it might not heal once it’s found. It might even cause far more damage than you can live with when you don’t have it treated right away.
It’s best to keep your health in check by seeing a doctor right away, and then handle the rest of this situation. No matter what happened, where you live, and what the case is, you’ll need to call your car insurance company to report the accident. It’s not an option, and you’ll need to do it.
Dealing with Insurance
When you’re involved in an accident, you deal with your insurance. You have no reason to deal with the insurance company that represents the at-fault driver. Your personal injury lawyer will tell you to talk only to your insurance agent and no one else, even if the other driver’s insurance company is calling you ask for a recorded statement.
It might seem like a reasonable request. Don’t they need your side of the story? The agent will most likely be very kind to you, offer to help you with your statement, and even come across as really embarrassed that he or she even has to ask when they know you just want to get this over with. They’ll probably apologize and even tell you once you record your statement for them, they can wrap up the details of your claim and issue a payout for you.
Don’t fall for this. You are under absolutely no legal obligation to speak to the insurance agency of the at-fault party. They do not need a statement from you, and they do not need anything recorded. They are doing this so you hopefully say something they can use to dispute this claim and get out of paying you. It might not even be something important, but it can be used against you. For example, an agent might ask you if you saw what the driver was doing when they hit you. If you say you have no idea because your baby was crying in the backseat and you weren’t paying attention to the other driver, they can use that against you.
Let an attorney help you in this situation. An attorney knows the law, they know what insurance agents need versus what they want, and they know all the tricks used to get out paying claims. Don’t let an insurance agent trick you into losing your claim because they need something from you. Let an attorney help protect you and your claim. This is already a difficult time, and it needn’t be any more difficult for you to deal with.