Car accidents leave chaos and confusion in their wake. Nerves are frazzled and people may be filled with shock or fear. If you have been in a crash, it’s important to know what steps you should take afterward. These tips are crucial, especially if you are considering filing a personal injury claim – get in touch with a South Bend personal injury attorney.
Check on Everyone
Make sure you are okay after the accident and check for injuries. Once you have established that you are physically okay, you should check on everyone else as well, including your passengers, people in the other vehicle or vehicles and pedestrians if any were also involved during the accident.
Move to a Safe Spot
If you can manage it, move over to a safe spot and out of the road. If your car has been totaled and cannot be driven, leave it where it is and move to a safe area out of the way.
Call for Emergency Services
Call 911 to summon emergency services to the scene. You will want the police to come so that a police report can be made. Later, you can request a copy of that report from your local police precinct. This is essential if you have been injured and plan on filing a personal injury claim.
In addition to police, medical personnel can come to the scene as well to check on you and anyone else involved in the accident. While you may initially feel as though you are fine, an injury may be masked by shock. If you do find out you have suffered an injury, you can later get copies of your medical records for your case.
Exchange Information with the Other Driver
Exchange contact information with the other driver, including name, address, and phone number. You should also be sure to do the same with auto insurance information. Also, you may want to make a note of the person’s driver’s license number, license plate number and the make, model and color of their car.
It’s essential, however, to avoid engaging in conversation beyond asking if the other person is okay. Saying too much could work against you later if there is a lawsuit involved. Above all else, never apologize for the accident or say something that might imply you are taking responsibility for being at fault.
Take Photos and Notes
If you can manage to do so, take photos of the scene of the accident. You should concentrate on the vehicles and any damage they have sustained, other property damage, skid marks on the road, the road conditions and anything else pertinent to the accident. Also, take notes so you have details of what happened. Your notes are essential in case you forget important information later on.
Talk to Witnesses
Approach witnesses and get their names and contact information. Their accounts can prove vital if you choose to file a lawsuit.
Call Your Insurer
Call your insurance company as soon as you can. If you plan on filing a claim through your insurer, don’t wait to contact the company as that can hinder your chances of recovery.
Contact a Lawyer
A personal injury lawyer provides essential advice on how to proceed with your claim. This is the best way to get a reasonable settlement as insurance companies typically try to lowball claimants.
If you are located in Indiana and were injured in an accident, it’s wise to get in touch with Blackburn & Green who have the experience needed to get you fair compensation for your medical expenses and other damages. Contact the firm to speak with South Bend personal injury attorneys at your earliest convenience.