Don’t Skip These 7 Crucial StepS
Being in a car accident is nobody’s idea of a good time. It can be extremely stressful, to the point that 9 percent of people in serious accidents develop PTSD. The mental strain of being in an accident can cause those involved to make short-sighted decisions that could end up costing them money and peace of mind. Don’t fall victim to this trap. In you’re involved in an accident, no matter how severe, follow these steps to ensure you preserve relevant information and keep yourself safe.
#1: Stop and Get to Safety
You should never drive away from the scene of an accident, even a mild fender bender. Hit-and-run is a serious crime. You shouldn’t move your car at all from the location of the accident, as it will disrupt the scene and make it difficult to accurately record what happened.
#2: Alert Other Drivers
Turn on your flashers and make clear to those driving by that you’ve been in an accident. Don’t stand on the side of your car that’s nearest to traffic. If your accident occurs at night and you have a flashlight in your car (which you should), turn it on and keep it in your hand.
#3: Call the Police and Get a Report
You might not think your accident requires the police, but you should call them regardless. Raised adrenaline can mask injuries until hours after an accident. You don’t want to risk not having a police report in the event you are hurting a day later.
When the police arrive, document everything you can about your accident. Don’t speculate about anything. Rely on the facts and make accurate statements to the officer. If you’re asked about your injuries, it’s important to say “I’m not sure,” rather than “I’m not injured.”
#4: Exchange Information and Amass Evidence
Don’t forget to exchange insurance information with any other drivers involved. If it comes time to make a claim, you’ll need to speak with both your insurance provider and theirs. Not having their information can hold up the process significantly. You should also take pictures of the scene and document every detail you can.
#5: Seek Medical Attention
As mentioned above, you may not know the extent of your injuries after an accident. A doctor can give you a thorough examination and address any concerns. Not only will this help you feel better, it will also strengthen the evidence surround your claim.
#6: If You Think You Need an Attorney, Call or Text Emery Law Office at (502) 771-1LAW (1528) BEFORE You Submit a Report to Your Insurance Company
You shouldn’t make a statement to an insurance company without an attorney present. What may seem like an innocent conversation could end up harming your claim. I’ve seen cases where a statement made over 6 months prior is brought up by an adjuster. Without an attorney to verify what was or wasn’t discussed, there’s no way to dispute the adjuster’s perspective. If you think there’s any chance you’ll have to hire an attorney, do it before you reach out to any insurance reps. You can follow the hard-and-fast advice in this music video and heed these attorneys’ request to “please shut up.”
If you want to make sure you have all of this information in your glove box, stop by Emery Law Office to pick up a free insurance document holder that will guide you through to what to do in the event of an accident.