Car accidents can be a scary experience, and ultimately something that might shake you up. However, it’s important to remember right after an accident to keep your cool. Doing so may be the difference from reaching a settlement in relation to the car accident, or missing out on money you might be entitled to. Here are our steps you should take after a car accident, but also how we can help you build a claim post-accident.
What To Do After An Accident
- Are you hurt? Is the other car? Checking to ensure that everyone is safe is the first stop you need to take. If someone is injured, call 911 immediately. If you are seriously injured, or if anyone else is, it’s important not to cause too much movement. This can be harmful to those injured.
- Are you in the middle of the road? After a car accident it is important to get to safety - most of the time this means moving all involved vehicles to the side of the road and waiting for the police.
- Speaking of police, if you haven’t already called 911 due to injuries, you’ll need to call 911 to get the police to come out. Even if you don’t think the accident is severe enough for this, you’ll always need to call the police if the accident is bad enough to stop traffic, cause injury, or for you to stop and wait. Most states even require that you call the police to the scene of any accident.
- Have you spoken to the other vehicle(s) involved? If not, while you wait for police is your time to get to chatting. It’s always important that you exchange information with the other vehicle(s) involved. This ensures if they are at fault, you can get taken care of via their insurance and vice versa. You should get their full name, phone, email, insurance company and policy number, driver’s license number and plate number, type/color/model of vehicle, and where the accident occurred. This should be all the information you need to proceed.
- Are you still waiting on police? Take time to gather “evidence.” By evidence, we don’t mean picking paint off your car from the other car and keeping it in a bag...we mean taking photos. Take photos of the damage done, the location, anything that might help you in case of a claim.
- Did the police document? That’s a trick-question, of course they did. When the police are called out to the scene of an accident they will be required to document what happened. Make sure you get copies of this, or ask where you can get copies of the police report. Many insurance companies will require the police report to proceed with claims, and if you want to proceed with a personal injury claim...you’ll definitely need it!
After the accident you’ll need to notify your insurance company of the accident - no matter if it was your fault or not. This is essential, as many insurance companies might even require this. Whether it’s required or not, by letting the insurance company know about the accident you’ll be able to take advantage of some of the benefits of your insurance such as rental car coverage if needed.
Was it the other vehicle’s fault? Did you sustain injuries? If so, and if you intend to pursue claim, the next step is to let the other driver’s insurance know that you intend to pursue a personal injury claim. In terms of property claims, these tend to be handled quickly by the insurance company but personal injury claims can take a little longer (one of the reasons you should consider an attorney).
No matter what, don’t try to wait so many days before hearing from the insurance company. If you tell them you’ll file a claim if you don’t hear back within 2 weeks, or 2 months, you’ll begin to lose credibility. After contacting them, file your suit with your Denver car accident attorney.
We would like to make one thing clear, we strongly recommend contacting a personal injury attorney before it gets to this point. Why? A personal injury attorney has experience in determining how large of a claim you can get, and the proper steps to take to increase your chances.
Mark A. Simon is someone who will fight tirelessly for your rights and ensure that you receive the highest possible settlement for each individual case. He will begin the investigation process immediately, ensuring you receive the best representation possible. When it comes to a personal injury attorney, you shouldn’t sacrifice quality for convenience and opt for the first person you find. Select an attorney who will get you the outcome you desire and the settlement you need. If you are in the Denver metro area and require legal help or assistance, contact him at 303-321-4878 to discuss your legal options during a free consultation.