7 Steps To Take After a Vehicle Accident
It’s one of our worst fears come to life. A vehicle accident is the stuff of nightmares, and for good reason. They’re one of the leading causes of serious injuries in the U.S., so it makes sense that our bodies, intuitively perceiving this peril, go into shock when we are involved in a car wreck.
In the immediate aftermath of a crash, many people simply don’t know what to do. They’re also disoriented and sometimes frightened. Knowing what to do right after a crash occurs can make our lives much easier and protect our interests in the event a legal claim is necessary.
So, what do you do right after a vehicle accident?
- Get to safety and find out whether anyone is injured.
- Call 911.
- Exchange information with the other driver.
- If possible, take pictures and get contact info of witnesses.
- Cooperate fully with the police.
- Seek medical treatment.
- If necessary, contact an attorney.
7 Steps To Take After an Accident
- Get to safety. If your vehicle is in the middle of a busy interstate or in another dangerous situation, you might consider moving to a safe place if at all possible. You’ll also want to see whether anyone involved in the crash is seriously injured. Be mindful of how you feel, too. The adrenaline pumping through your body after a car accident can mask symptoms of a serious injury.
- Call 911. The police will need to be notified of the crash, so they can respond to the scene and file a police report. If anyone has been injured, an ambulance should also be requested. While you wait for the police and ambulance to arrive, you can follow the next step.
- Exchange information with the other driver. You’ll need the name and insurance information of the other driver. You can be polite with the other driver, but you should not apologize or engage in a lengthy conversation. What you say to this driver might be used against you. You also don’t know all of the facts about the crash, so even if you think you bear some responsibility, you should remember that there might be causes you aren’t aware of. Be straightforward, get the information you need and refrain from small talk.
- If possible, take pictures and gather contact information of witnesses. Documenting the scene of the crash and the damage to your vehicle could be useful for insurance or legal purposes. If other people saw the crash happen, then you should consider asking them to give you their contact information in case you need their account of what happened. If you are unable to do these things because of an injury, you might ask a passenger to do it for you.
- Cooperate fully with the police. By this time, the police have probably arrived at the scene of the crash. Give them your account of what happened and answer any questions they might have. Eventually, you will need a copy of the police report to file with an insurance company.
- Seek medical attention. If you are seriously injured, you should request an ambulance for immediate care. Even if your injuries appear to be minor, you should err on the side of caution and get immediate medical attention. If you aren’t sure whether you are injured, visit a doctor as soon as possible to see whether you have injuries and how serious they might be.
- If necessary, contact an attorney. If you were injured in a vehicle accident, you will need to deal with insurance companies and make a case for fair compensation. An attorney makes this process much simpler and maximizes the payment you will receive. The sooner you can contact an attorney after an accident, the more effective they’ll be in getting you the compensation you deserve.
If you’ve been hurt in a car accident in Tennessee, contact John R. Colvin to speak to an attorney who knows how to get results for clients. John R. Colvin has been helping injured clients for more than 20 years. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation.
What to do In the Days, Weeks and Months Following Your Car Accident
After the dust settles, there are a few things to keep in mind. You might face several challenges following a vehicle accident, such as costly medical care, a damaged vehicle, difficulty working, and pain and suffering, to name a few. All the while, here are some points to remember…
On Dealing with Insurance Companies
When you’re involved in a car accident, you’ll need to notify your insurance company. Cooperate with your insurance company to the best of your ability, but know this: You DO NOT have to accept the first offer they make you. Many people accept an initial offer thinking that this amount is all they can reasonably expect. If the offer is inadequate for the costs you’ve faced, you can negotiate a fairer deal.
If you are contacted by someone else’s insurance company, you should not speak to them. They will want you to make a statement, which they’ll use to offer you less than you deserve or to deny payment entirely. Instead of speaking to a representative of another driver’s insurance company, tell them they can speak to your lawyer.
John R. Colvin has years of experience dealing with insurance companies. He knows the tactics they use to offer less than they should, and he makes sure his clients get compensation that reflects their needs. Contact John R. Colvin today to schedule a free consultation with our team.
On Keeping Track of the Costs You Face
You’re likely to receive many bills after a crash. These might include automotive repair bills or medical bills. You might also be unable to work because of your injury and, depending on the nature of your job, this might impact how much money you are earning.
Keep track of all the costs you are facing. Keep copies of all the bills you receive, in addition to any correspondence from doctors or insurance companies. Being able to show a record of the costs you’re encountering, from repair bills to the costs of medication, is important when establishing how much money you are owed from the other driver’s insurance company or your own.
On Monitoring Your Health
Your biggest concern after a crash is your health. Make sure you follow any orders your doctor gives you. You will likely be in a great deal of pain as you recover. One way of documenting the challenges you encounter is to keep a journal devoted specifically to your injuries, including the struggles you face and the progress you make in recovery.
If you end up filing a personal injury claim to receive compensation, part of the payment you’ll be demanding will be related to “non-economic damages,” which means the pain, suffering or other damages that aren’t directly related to your finances. However, these damages are no less real than economic ones.
Take your pain seriously and remember that any claim you file must take your physical and emotional suffering into account. If you aren’t sure how to go about documenting or requesting payment for your injuries, don’t hesitate to contact John R. Colvin. We have been through this process many times, and we know how to determine non-economic damages in car accident cases.
On Finding a Car Accident Attorney
To help you in all the steps we’ve discussed, you should consider hiring an attorney with experience handling car accident cases. First, look for an attorney that practices in your state. Second, make sure they have a track record of success in car accident cases.
Many attorneys offer free consultations to help you better understand your legal options and give you the opportunity to see whether they are the right fit for your case. Take advantage of these consultations before hiring the attorney.
Contact John R. Colvin for Help with Your Tennessee Car Accident Case
For more than 20 years, John R. Colvin has been fighting for his clients. When people come into our offices, they are looking for an advocate who will devote the time and attention their case deserves. We make sure that they get legal representation and service that meets and exceeds their needs.
If you’ve been injured in a vehicle accident in Tennessee, contact John R. Colvin today so our team can learn more about your case and discuss your legal options. You might be unsure of what to do after a car accident. When we handle your car accident claim, you can be sure that your case is in good hands and that you can focus on your health and your recovery.
We offer free consultations, and you are under no obligation to move forward with a claim if you don’t wish to do so. Contact John R. Colvin to schedule a free case evaluation.