What should you do in case of a car accident? It is not a situation that one would want to be in but unfortunate as it is, you need to have your priorities in order.
Safety of parties involved: The first priority should be the safety of everyone involved in the accident be it someone in your car or anyone else’s. Make sure you assess your own injuries first and then see if other are alright. If required do call the emergency number as soon as possible.
Safety of Others: In case of road accidents, other travelers and incoming traffic is also in the danger of the being hit especially if there are broken up cars in the middle of the road. Hence, you should call the police as soon as possible. Though it helps to be a Good Samaritan, do not try and engage the traffic on your own.
Insurance: Once you are sure of the well-being of everyone, you should think of the damages suffered due to injuries to yourself and your car as a result of the accident. Although you are insured against accidents, you might have to fight for your claim in the court and hence you need to be careful with your course of action.
So what is what should and shouldn’t you do in such cases:
What should you do?
In a single sentence, get enough proof of your innocence in the accident. This might include taking pictures of the scene, being present at the scene when police arrives, talking to eye witlessness and taking their contact information or taking a note of the car with which the collision occurred.
What you shouldn’t do?
Similarly, you shouldn’t do anything that undermines your claims for damages. You should not leave the scene of the accident, relocate your car to somewhere else, and agree to settle things out of court or apologize.
Once you have taken all necessary action at the scene of the accidents, you should be aware of your rights with respect to insurance claims.
What are you eligible for?
The most obvious damages that you should be compensated for are the expenses in car repair and treatment of your injuries. However, you are also eligible to claim for any time and salary you lose due absence owing to the accident and the mental trauma that you might suffer from the accident.
How to go about the claims?
Getting in touch with property damage evaluation shops is the first step and contacting an accident attorney is the next. There are different experts for different types of claims and you should contact only the one specialized in your case. There can be different car accident attorney who specializes in car insurance than one who does in motorcycle accidents.
How to hire a personal injury lawyer?
A good personal injury will not charge you any fee if he is not able to win the claim case for you. Also, doe to difference in laws across states, you should make sure that your personal injury lawyer is conversant of the state as well as federal laws about accidental insurance. The fee that the attorney takes in case of a victory in the claims case should not ideally be more than 40% of the settlement amount.