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  • Writer's pictureJinks Crow

Next Steps Checklist: What to Do if You Are in an Accident

Summer means more cars and trucks on the road, which means more accidents. Being involved in an accident can be a life-altering experience, filled with stress and uncertainty. As personal injury lawyers, our goal is to ensure that you are well-prepared to handle the situation effectively and protect your rights. We've put together a comprehensive checklist to guide you through what to do if you are in an accident.

Clipboard and checklist graphic with "What do I do if I've been in a car accident" question.

Ensure Safety and Seek Medical Attention

  1. Prioritize health and safety by checking yourself and others for injury. If anyone is injured, call 911 immediately for medical assistance.

  2. If possible, move to a safe area to avoid further accidents. If the vehicles are drivable, move them to the side of the road.

  3. Turn on hazard lights to alert other drivers.

 

Contact Law Enforcement

  1. Call the Police, Sheriff, or State Troopers to report the accident, even if it appears minor. A police report can be very helpful in any future claims.

  2. Cooperate with law enforcement and provide accurate information.

 

Gather Information

  1. Exchange contact and insurance information with the other party involved in the accident. Use your phone to get a picture of their insurance card and driver’s license.

  2. Snap a photo with your phone of everyone’s driver’s license – drivers, passengers, and witnesses.

  3. Document the scene by taking photos of the accident, including vehicle damage, license plates, road conditions, and any visible injuries.

  4. Note the time, date, weather conditions, and any other relevant details.

  5. If there are any witnesses, ask for their contact information and a brief statement about what they saw. You can take a picture of their drivers license and even record their statement.

 

Avoid Admitting Fault

  1. Do not admit fault or make statements that could be used against you later. Chances are that you don’t know all the facts so don’t assume any. Simply state the facts as you know them when discussing the accident with others.

  2. Be polite and cooperative with the police and other parties involved.

 

Seek Medical Attention (Again)

  1. Even if you feel fine, it’s crucial to see a doctor as soon as possible. Some injuries may not be immediately apparent.

  2. Keep detailed records of your medical visits, treatments, and any related expenses.

 

Notify Your Insurance Company

  1. Contact your insurance company to report the accident. Provide them with the necessary details and cooperate fully.

  2. Avoid giving recorded statements without consulting your lawyer first.

 

Keep Detailed Records

  1. Keep a detailed record of all expenses related to the accident, including medical bills, vehicle repairs, and any lost wages due to time off work.

  2. Maintain a journal to document your injuries, pain levels, and the impact on your daily life.

 

Consult an Experienced Personal Injury Lawyer

  1. Contact a personal injury lawyer as soon as possible to discuss your case. They can provide valuable guidance and protect your rights. We are always available to help you and are just a phone call away.

  2. Do not sign any settlements or agreements without consulting your lawyer.

 

Being involved in an accident is undoubtedly overwhelming, but taking the right steps immediately can make a significant difference in protecting your rights and securing fair compensation. By following this checklist, you can ensure that you are prepared and well-informed. If you have any questions or need legal assistance, our experienced personal injury lawyers are here to help. Contact us today for a free consultation.

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