What To Do If You Are
In An Auto Accident
As soon as an accident happens:
- Stop your car. Failure to stop can result in serious criminal consequences.
- If possible, move your car so it doesn’t block traffic.
- Warn approaching traffic with flares and/or your car’s flashers.
- Call the police.
At the scene of the accident:
- Do not make any statements about who caused the accident.
- Note carefully any statements made by other people involved in the accident.
- Get the following information from the driver(s) of the other vehicle(s) involved in the accident
- Driver’s license. Get the driver’s birth date, license number and the state of issue.
- Vehicle make, model, year and tag number. Ask to see the registration card to confirm this important information.
- Name, address and phone numbers (home and work) of the driver.
- Name, address and phone numbers (home and work) of the owner of the vehicle.
- The insurance Policy Number, the name of the insurance company, and the agent’s name, address and phone number.
- Get the names, addresses, home and work phone numbers of anyone who saw the accident or came on the scene afterwards.
- Tell the police officer that you want a written report of the accident. Take down the officer’s name, badge number and department.
- If injured, go immediately by ambulance or car to a hospital emergency room. CAUTION: Do Not Say you are fine. You may not realize that you are injured, or how badly you are hurt. Be on the safe side and go to the hospital or see your doctor right away. DO NOT DELAY! You may not be aware of soft tissue injury until days or weeks after the accident. You should have a doctor familiar with car accident injuries examine you promptly. Seeing a doctor immediately is very important for your well being, and in getting compensation for your personal injury.
Immediately after the accident:
- Do not discuss the accident with anyone except your attorney. Do not give any statements without first consulting your attorney.
- Call your attorney! The sooner your attorney is brought into the matter, the better he can advise you and protect your rights. Your attorney will help you process your medical bills, and help you claim any damages.
- Call your insurance company immediately after talking to your attorney to report the accident, whether or not you were at fault. Failure to do so may result in denial of any claimed damages.
- Write out a detailed description of the accident, including location, time of day, weather conditions, description of the roadway, speed limit, traffic lights, stop signs, etc.
- Take pictures of any severe bodily injuries and damage to your car immediately. This will vividly record how bad it was.