An auto accident can be scary no matter how minor or severe it is. You want to believe that you’re always safe behind the wheel of your car, but unfortunately, that’s not always the case. After a car accident, it’s important to take certain measures to keep yourself safe, trade information with other drivers, talk with police officers, and file your claim.
In today’s blog, we are going to go over everything you should do after a car accident in order to get all of the information you need for a claim and to make sure you receive the medical treatment you need. If you’ve been in a car accident in the Twin Cities and need the help of a personal injury lawyer, contact Woods & Thompson, P.A. today to schedule an appointment.
Move To A Safe Area
Even if it’s just a minor accident, you need to stay at the scene and trade information with the other drivers. Before doing this, though, you need to move the vehicles out of traffic and to a safe area, if possible.
In a minor auto accident, move the vehicle onto the side of the road, put it in park, and turn your hazard lights on.
In a major car accident, move your vehicle from traffic if you can. Otherwise, turn your hazard lights on and set up cones, warning triangles, or flares around the accident if you have them. This will help prevent other cars from hitting you and creating a worse accident.
If you are seriously injured, wait for help and medical personnel to arrive. If you are able to get out of your vehicle, you should do so as soon as it’s safe.
Check On Other Involved Drivers
Once you’re out of the way of traffic and know that you don’t have any serious injuries, check on other drivers involved in the auto accident to see if they are okay or need any help. If you are unsure whether or not anyone is seriously injured, call an ambulance just in case.
Call The Police
Even if it’s just a minor car accident and no one is injured, it’s important to call the police so that you can obtain a police report to submit to insurance and your personal injury lawyer. This claim is an important piece in determining who is at fault in an auto accident, which can help you get your medical bills and vehicle repairs paid for.
It’s important to trade information with everyone involved in a car accident, even if some vehicles didn’t collide with others. When gathering information be sure to record:
- The names and contact information of all drivers and passengers
- Vehicle descriptions: make, model, year, license plate numbers
- Driver’s license numbers
- Insurance companies and policy numbers
- Names, contact information, and statements from witnesses
- Police officers’ names and badge numbers
- The location or address of the accident
Your insurance company will want all of this information to make as accurate of a claim as possible.
Before any vehicles are towed or leave the scene, it’s important to take photos of every car involved in the accident. If it is safe and possible, take a photo of the entire scene as well. This will give your insurance agent solid evidence of the severity of the accident and the condition of the vehicles.
Take photos of any injuries, damaged property, and torn clothing as well. This can all be used as evidence to back up your claim with insurance or case with a personal injury lawyer.
File A Claim
Once you’ve gathered all the information you need, been examined by an EMT if an ambulance responded to the scene, and spoken with a police officer, you should file a claim with your insurance company.
It’s okay to take a moment to calm down afterward, but get in touch with your insurance agent as soon as possible. Give them all of the information you’ve gathered about the accident and other drivers so the claim can be submitted.
Seek Medical Attention
After a car accident, you may feel like you’re okay. Even if you’ve been in a minor accident though, it’s important to seek medical attention. This is because the adrenaline rush from the accident could be masking any pain or strain you sustained.
A medical professional will be able to determine the extent of your injuries and communicate with you the symptoms you are likely to develop in the coming days, weeks, and even months following your accident.
Hire A Personal Injury Lawyer
Depending on the severity of the auto accident, who was involved, or how many people were involved, reaching a settlement agreement can become difficult. It’s still important for you to receive the medical care that you need to recover, as well as have repairs done on your vehicle or receive compensation if your vehicle is totaled.
Navigating the legal formalities of this can be difficult, so trust someone to represent you who has experience with personal injury cases. At Woods & Thompson, P.A. in the Twin Cities, we have experience representing those who have been in serious or minor car accidents to help them get the compensation they need.
If you’ve been in an auto accident and would like representation to defend your case, contact our firm of personal injury lawyers to schedule an appointment and hire one of our attorneys today.
If you’d like to learn more about the causes and types of auto accidents, as well as situations where you want a personal injury lawyer, check out our page on auto accidents.