After an accident, it’s normal to be overwhelmed with emotions. There’s the stress and pain of recovering from an injury, plus the complications that come with insurance companies and personal injury attorneys. This can make knowing what steps to take after a car crash or other personal injury situation challenging. While every case is different, there are some general things you should do as soon as possible after an accident that will help your personal injury attorney. At Fletcher & Fletcher Criminal Defense, we recommend doing these things as follows:
Call an attorney as soon as possible.
It may sound obvious, but some people must remember to do it. Don’t wait for the insurance company to call you or for the police to contact you. Call your personal injury attorney right away. Ask questions and be honest with them about what happened, including if you were driving or not at fault in the accident. The more they know about what happened, the better they can help you.
Report the accident to the police and your insurance company.
It’s essential to report the accident to the police and your insurance company as soon as possible. A police report is vital in proving that the other driver was at fault, which is necessary for collecting compensation from them. If you don’t have this evidence, your personal injury attorney won’t be able to help you. Additionally, if your insurance company doesn’t know about your accident, they may be unable to pay for any medical bills or lost wages resulting from the crash.
Seek medical attention.
One of the most important steps is to seek medical attention. Please don’t wait for the pain to go away; don’t wait for a doctor’s appointment; don’t wait for the insurance company to call you, and don’t wait for them to pay your medical bills. You’ll want all of that documented as soon as possible so you can work with your attorney on getting adequately compensated.
Do not sign any settlement offers without consulting with your attorney.
After an accident, you may receive offers or deals from the insurance company. It is crucial to consult your attorney before signing anything to protect your rights.
It would be best if you never accepted any settlement offer without consulting with your attorney because doing so could cost you more money in the long run. Suppose a medical bill is higher than initially offered, and you have already accepted that amount from the insurance company. In that case, they will be under no obligation to pay for future medical expenses related to your injury. They can point out that they paid for all their liability and refuse to cover any further costs incurred by treating your injuries after their initial offer has been exceeded.
Additionally, if there are other parties involved in an incident—for example, a third party driver whose negligence caused an accident—and there are additional damages such as pain and suffering or lost wages that result from being injured by another person’s negligence. Those amounts should also be considered when deciding whether or not to accept a settlement offer from either party’s insurance company.
Hold on to records, receipts and copies of all communications related to your injury and recovery.
Copies of all correspondence with your personal injury attorney and the other party’s attorney are critical. You will want to keep them if there are problems later on in the case. The same goes for any communication you have with your health provider or chiropractor—you may also need this information.
Keep copies of all communications with the police if you were involved in an accident where someone was injured or killed, or if there was property damage that exceeded $1,000. The local police department will send an officer out to investigate (unless it is a hit-and-run). Still, it is best practice to contact them yourself as soon as possible after an accident so they can document everything accurately and take necessary measures for securing evidence at the scene (such as photographs).
Take detailed notes regarding what happened before and after the accident.
If you’ve been in an accident, you can do a few things to help your personal injury attorney. The first thing is to take detailed notes about what happened before and after the accident. Your attorney will want to know:
- What time of day was it?
- Where did it happen?
- Who was involved? Were there other witnesses who saw what happened? If so, their names and contact information should be kept on hand.
- What were you doing at the time of the accident? Was another driver distracted by their cell phone or some other distraction that led them to hit your car or drive dangerously close to yours for this crash to occur?
Write down important information immediately after the accident, including names, phone numbers and contact info of anyone involved in or witnessed the accident.
This is the most important thing you can do after an accident. Write down the names and contact information of everyone involved in or who witnessed your car accident. Also, write down the name, phone number, and contact information of anyone who helped you after your accident.
Being prepared can be helpful to you and your attorney
One of the best ways to maintain your composure and stay focused on getting better is to be prepared. Here are some things you should do:
- Take notes, especially after small conversations and meetings. This can help you later when it comes time to testify or testify at a deposition.
- Keep an accurate record of all medical expenses and bills incurred as a result of your accident—and make sure they’re itemized, so there’s no confusion about what was covered by insurance or not.
- Make sure that all your health care providers are in contact with one another (e.g., primary care physicians, emergency room doctors, specialists). Having this information readily available will help speed up the process so that everyone can focus on getting you better faster rather than struggling through redundant paperwork requests from each other
Remember, after an accident, you need to be prepared for what happens next. An injury may keep you from doing all the things you normally do to take care of yourself and your family. The more prepared you are when it comes time to seek compensation for damages caused by another’s negligence or wrongdoing, the better off you will be. Remember to call a personal injury attorney from Fletcher & Fletcher Criminal Defense, we’ll fight for you to get the best possible compensation.