What Should I Do After an Accident?
Car Accident – Serving All of California
It is extremely important that you follow some basic rules beginning at the scene of the automobile accident, so you do not jeopardize your health and your right to compensation.
- Stay at the scene of the automobile accident and wait for a police officer to come and make a full report of your accident. The existence of a police report will strengthen your case.
- Seek medical attention immediately. Obtaining a complete examination from a doctor as soon as possible will serve two purposes. First, the doctor can often detect injuries that you may not have noticed until several days after the accident and will be more easily treated if caught early; and second, a doctor’s examination will automatically create a complete medical record of any injuries you sustain during this accident and this will strengthen your case.
- Get complete information from everyone at the scene of the automobile accident. Obtain the name, address, telephone number, driver’s license number, and insurance information of all of the drivers involved in the automobile accident, as well as the names of any emergency personnel and the contact information of any witnesses.
- Do not admit guilt or sign any statements without talking to a lawyer first. Be cooperative with the police, other drivers and emergency personnel at the scene of the automobile accident, but don’t say anything that can later be used as evidence to prove that you were responsible for an accident that wasn’t your fault.
- Take photographs of your injuries and damage to your vehicle. These photographs work best as evidence when they are taken at the scene of the automobile accident, but they can also be taken after the fact if you are severely injured and need immediate hospitalization.
- Keep complete records of medical expenses and other costs related to your accident which can be used as evidence to help you verify these damages.
- Contact your insurance company and report the accident so they can begin processing your claim. Make sure you give this information to your insurance company with an attorney’s assistance at the time you give the statement in order not to prejudice your claim. Your own insurance company is in the business to make money, they are not there to assist you no matter how nice they may seem. They are looking for ways not to pay you the compensation you deserve - don’t be one of their victims!
- Contact Susan Handel immediately.
What You Should NOT Do after You Have Been Involved in an Automobile Accident
- Do not panic. Remain calm and call for help.
- Do not leave the scene of the accident.
- Do not discuss the accident with anyone but the police and your attorney.
- Do not speak to anyone from the at-fault party’s insurance company without an attorney.
- Do not sign any papers from an insurance company or agree to a settlement without an attorney.
- Do not wait. Contact Susan Handel immediately.