I Was In a Car Accident, What Do I Do?
Getting into an automobile accident can be an overwhelming experience. It is important that you protect yourself and get the information needed to properly document and pursue any claims that may result from the accident. Here are some important steps to remember.
What To Do After An Accident:
Contact the Police to file an accident report. Having a Police Report is an invaluable tool. The Police Report will memorialize the parties involved and facts of the accident. It is important as it will provide the names, addresses, owner, driver and vehicle information for the parties involved in the loss as well as any witnesses, injuries, tickets issued, etc. This is all important evidence in locating the adverse party’s insurance carrier and will be vital in determining liability for the accident.
While at the scene of the accident, it is important to obtain as much information as possible. Take notes of crucial facts, other parties names and contact information and their insurance information. You may also take photographs of the damages to the vehicles, the accident scene, position of the vehicles or any other relevant evidence of the accident.
Do not discuss the accident with anyone other than the Police and do not admit fault or responsibility. It is common for people to be shaken after an accident and it may be difficult to think clearly. Seek legal advice or representation before providing any statements, signing any documents or speaking with an insurance company.
While you may not believe you were injured, most injuries are not immediately evident so it is important to seek medical attention. Be honest with your doctor and note any injury complaints related to the accident. Document what the doctor tells you regarding your diagnosis, treatment recommendation and any concerns. It is important to follow through with your doctor’s recommendations for prescriptions and follow up for further treatment as needed.
Be sure to notify your insurance carrier. New York is a no-fault state and insurance providers will cover the costs of your medical treatment as well as any time lost from work.
Once again, you may wish to consult a personal injury attorney before signing any documents relating to the accident, especially if you are not clear on or comfortable with what you are signing. Having a personal injury attorney can be crucial as they will investigate the accident and communicate with the insurance providers to make sure you receive the benefits you deserve and bring you peace of mind that someone is helping to protect your rights.