Eight Things to Do After a Car Accident and Two Things Not to Do
Of all the people who contact car accident lawyers after getting injured in a car accident, only a small fraction of them will go to trial. In most cases, it is possible to resolve your financial disputes after a car accident without going to trial. How favorable of an outcome the lawyer can get for you depends in part on your actions in the first hours and days after the accident. If you get injured in a car accident, follow these steps to avoid costly mistakes, and contact a South Carolina car accident lawyer as soon as possible.
What to Do After an Accident
If you get in a car accident, your highest priority is your physical safety. The second most important thing is gathering and preserving evidence in case a financial or legal dispute results from the accident.
- Get out of traffic. If your car will move, then pull over. If not, then put your hazard lights on and get out of the car.
- Ask the people in the other car if anyone is injured. Remember, making sure everyone is safe and gets the medical attention they need comes first.
- Flag down a police officer or call 911 to send an ambulance. This way, you will have a police report and will get prompt medical attention.
- Exchange contact information and insurance information with the other driver.
- Take images of the scene of the accident, including vehicle damage, skid marks, and road conditions or weather conditions that would have made it difficult to avoid a collision.
- Have your injuries examined at the emergency room, even if you feel like you are not seriously injured. You will need this documentation if your symptoms worsen later.
- Notify your car insurance company of the accident, but do not give a recorded statement, if possible.
- Keep track of all the expenses you incur in connection with the accident. This includes medical bills as well as vehicle repairs, rideshare rides, and missed workdays not covered by paid leave.
- Contact a car accident lawyer as soon as possible after the accident. You might need the lawyer’s help in negotiating a better settlement with the insurance company or filing a lawsuit against one or more parties responsible for the accident.
What Not to Do After a Car Accident
Two mistakes can sabotage your case if you end up having to file a car accident. Here is what to do to avoid trouble:
- Don’t give a recorded statement to the insurance company. The insurance company will use everything you say to weaken your case, so if they ask you to give a recorded statement, just refer them to your car accident lawyer.
- Don’t sign the settlement offer letter from the insurance company without consulting a lawyer first. Once you sign, you have agreed to accept the amount they have offered you and have given up the right to seek more money.
Let Us Help You Today
A Columbia car accident lawyer is your best protection against insurance companies that want to pay you the bare minimum in compensation for your accident-related losses. Contact The Stanley Law Group for help today.