6 Things You Must Do If You Were Injured in an Auto Accident
In the United States, over six million accidents do occur in a year.
Most car accidents involve property damage, and in extreme cases, people are injured or die.
Well, if you injured in an auto accident, there are several things you should contemplate to save yourself while also not forgetting your interests. Are you interested in knowing the seven top things you should do in case of a car accident? If yes, keep reading this article, as we learn more.
- Stop the Car and Check for Any Injuries
First and foremost, when you are involved in a car accident, you should never run away from the accident scene. Always stop your car at the scene. Once you have brought your car into a complete stop, you should check for injuries.
If you were driving passengers, check whether they have any injuries. You may notice an occupant of your car may not have any physical injuries, but they seem weary.
At this point, you should immediately dial 911. It is possible your occupants have sustained an internal injury, which is more dangerous than the physical injury.
- Notify the Authorities
This is the next crucial step to undertake when you are involved in an accident. Even if an accident seems to be minor, you should always make sure the police are aware of the accident. The police will be able to fill a report they can use in the court of law.
You also have an alternative to filing the report yourself. While filing the report yourself, you should try as much as possible to be accurate and remember all the accident details. It is advisable to get your copy of the report just in case you need to hire a car accident attorney.
- Exchange Your Information and Call Your Insurance Company
You should make sure you exchange essential details with the other driver. Such information includes; their name, model of the car, date, address, phone number, and insuring company. It is always advisable to note down the names and phone numbers of any witnesses at the accident scene.
After you have exchanged relevant details with the other driver, you should now proceed and notify your insurance company. You should do this when you are still at the accident scene.
The insurance agent who will pick your call should be in a position to notify you of what to do. This may even involve the signing of any contract that hasn’t been reviewed by the company.
Later on, your insurance company should compensate you for the damage incurred depending on the terms and conditions that you may have discussed. It should be noted that if you don’t notify your insurer, you may not be compensated for the accident.
- Take Pictures of the Accident
It is essential to take photographs of the accident scene. If you don’t have a camera in your car, use your mobile phone. The accident pictures will serve as proof of the accident even when you proceed with the case later on.
When taking pictures, you should ensure you capture visible car damages and perhaps even the injuries that you may have sustained. It should be noted that the photograph capturing should not interfere with ongoing investigations in any way. If you aren’t able to capture the photographs at the accident scene, you may take the photographs later on.
- Seeking Medical Attention
It is advisable to have the number of your physician or any medic since this will come in handy during an accident. When you get involved in an accident, make sure you notify the necessary medical authorities as soon as possible.
Some people tend to involve medical authorities two or three days after the accident. However, this isn’t right. When you involve the medics after the accident, you may have sustained an internal injury which may be extremely dangerous if not reported early.
Seeking medical attention, even if you have minor injuries, is essential in ensuring you are in good health. When you notify a medic of your state during the accident, they will be able to track your development progress, and this may even help in investigations.
If you happen to have passed out during an accident, you may have had a head injury. When such medical damage isn’t treated, it may even cause behavioral changes.
- Legal Action
After all, is said and done, you should now consider taking legal action against the driver who caused the accidents. Many people are not aware of how to build a strong case and what is required to file an accident case in a court of law. You can follow the following procedures to enable you to file a successful case against the driver who caused the accident.
It is arguably true that every accident case is treated and handled differently depending on the injuries sustained, damages of the car, just to mention a few factors.
1st Step: Consultation With Your Attorney
It is essential to consult with your attorney about the aspects of your accident to build a successful case in court. First and foremost, you should determine whether there was negligence from the other party, which resulted in the accident.
You should also provide your medical bills to the attorney to hasten the compensation process or any processes required. Your attorney should also ask for your legal opinions about the accident. Your attorney should also be in a position of asking your medic about the extent of your injuries.
2nd Step: Investigation of the Case
Your attorney should independently investigate your injury claim and ensure it completed within the agreed timeframe. The accident injury claim process will involve the attorney going through police reports which were written during the scene of the accident.
Witnesses reports, photographs, medical bills, and records are some of the essential credentials that your attorney will require to investigate the case. Your attorney should partner with the necessary authorities depending on the circumstances of your accident.
In most cases, your attorney may wish to secure the data of your vehicle. The vehicle data will play a vital role in telling the condition and roadworthiness of the vehicle.
In addition, the accident witnesses may be contacted to inform the attorney of how the accident happened. By so doing, your attorney will have an excellent ground to file your case.
3rd Step: Package Demanding Step
This is a very crucial step that your attorney should take when you are injured in an automobile accident. This step mainly involves the demand for compensation from your insurance. Your attorney will write a demand letter that will outline your case, damages, and your liabilities.
This letter will be reviewed by the other party, be it the insurance company, individual, or an organization. The party will either accept the demand, make an offer, or reject it.
4th Step: Injury Lawsuit Filing
If you are injured in an automobile accident, and your case can’t be settled upfront; the attorney will help file a lawsuit. This will ensure the compensation process is followed.
5th Step: Discovery Phase
During this phase, both parties should obtain further evidence amongst themselves. This step is necessary to enhance the evaluation of the comprehensive nature from either side.
6th step: Mediation
Before your attorney files a lawsuit; a mediator is usually invited. The primary role of the mediator is to bring both parties together and see whether they can agree instead of going for a trial. If the mediation fails; the only option left is proceeding to the court to start litigation
7th Step: Trail Sessions
Since both parties won’t have settled the case; they proceed to the court for trial sessions. During this process; the Jury will analyze the facts brought before the court of law and possible award compensations for the injuries.
8th Step: Appeal
If the losing party is not satisfied with the decision made by the Jury, they may consider going for an appeal. During this stage, the losing party may proceed to a higher court to challenge the decision.
Injured in an Auto Accident? Follow Our Tips
At times accidents may leave you with permanent injuries which may even affect your life. It is highly recommendable to seek compensation from the other party or your insurance company in case you are injured in an auto accident.
To read more informative tips on personal injury cases, kindly read our other blog posts.