Auto accidents can be devastating. It can be even harder dealing with the aftermath of the collision. Obviously, you have property damage to your car, potentially severe injuries and related expenses from both. It is likely that you will be in a state of confusion immediately after the wreck or in the hours and days that follow. However, this is the time period when you need to begin building a strong case to ensure you receive compensation from the insurance company.
Steps to Take After a Motor Vehicle Collision
The following three steps are vital for building a strong personal injury claim when the time comes.
- Contact the police. If you are able to do so, it is important to get in touch with the police as soon as possible. If the police are present at the scene, they will prepare an incident report that will include pictures of the scene of the collision and witness accounts of how it happened. It will also include comments by the officer on how he or she believes the accident occurred based on the evidence at the scene and witness accounts.
This report will play an important role in establishing liability when you file your claim.
- Seek medical attention. It is important to seek medical attention immediately after the wreck. In some cases, you won’t realize that you have suffered an injury and should always get checked out if you want to avoid complications. You will also need treatment to help in the healing process. It is also important to follow up with doctors and consistently follow their instructions. This will help you heal better and faster.
The medical records of your diagnosis and treatment will be vital evidence in your case. They will be evidence that your injuries were caused by the collision. They will also help to prove the level of pain and suffering the accident caused.
- Avoid talking to insurance adjusters without an attorney present. When word reaches the insurance company of the at-fault party, representatives of the insurer are likely to take action to control the damage. Insurance adjusters will begin the investigation by attempting to take statements from the parties involved. While they may seem like they are attempting to get the facts, they are motivated to minimize any settlement payment to you or any other victim. If you are contacted by an insurance adjuster in the days following your accident, you should wait to provide information until you have retained an attorney.
Avoid talking to the insurance adjuster without an attorney present. Anything you say to the adjuster may be used against you when you file a claim for compensation. The best way to avoid making a statement is to refer the adjuster to your attorney. Let your attorney handle all communication with the insurance company. Then, when you do need to make a statement, your attorney will be present to support you.