What Are the First Steps After an Accident?
A car accident can be a scary incident, but the aftermath may be even more intimidating. Most people don’t know what to do or who to call first. By asking “what are the first steps after an accident,” you can prepare yourself for a collision. You might experience less stress and have a better chance at a positive outcome.
What Should You Do?
Whether you’re in a minor fender-bender or a serious collision, your reaction matters. The way that you handle the incident can impact your future. To give yourself a better chance at a good outcome, you should follow the following steps:
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1. Call the Police
Every accident should have a police presence. Even if your accident is minor, one of the first things you should do is call the police. If it’s a serious accident, call 911. However, if it’s not serious, you might want to directly call the local police.
There’s one very important reason for having police present at the scene of the accident – documentation. Often, there isn’t much proof of the cause of an accident. You could claim that the other driver failed to yield, but they could deny it. The police give you proof of what really happened.
Typically, the police will look at the damage and listen to statements from drivers, passengers, and witnesses. After hearing all of the evidence, they write out a police report. The insurance company will rely on the police report to handle the claim. Additionally, the report could be useful if you file a personal injury claim against the other driver.
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2. Get Medical Attention
Car accidents usually involve some type of injury. However, the severity of those injuries varies greatly. They range from minor scrapes and bruises to brain injuries.
Regardless of how serious your injuries are, you should seek medical attention. Emergencies require ambulances, but certain injuries only require a visit to your doctor. Some people have internal injuries and don’t realize it until after the accident.
Getting medical attention doesn’t only help your own health. It also helps your case. If you have documentation of your injuries, you might be able to recover the cost of your medical care.
3. Document the Scene
If you’re not seriously injured, you should document the scene of the accident. Take pictures of the damage to your vehicle and to the other driver’s vehicle. You should also take pictures of any street signs and road signs.
Be sure to collect the other driver’s details. For instance, write down their plate number, full name, contact information, and insurance information. If there are any witnesses, collect their names and contact information as well.
When you speak with the other driver, avoid talking about the accident. Don’t apologize or take the blame for the accident.
4. Call Your Insurance Company and a Car Accident Lawyer in West Palm Beach
One of the most important tasks to do after your accident is to call your insurance company. Notify them of the accident so you can start the claims process.
In most situations, you could also benefit from working with a car accident lawyer in West Palm Beach. Many car accidents involve negligence. You may be able to file a personal injury claim against the other driver. With a successful claim, you could receive money for damages.
Why Does Your Reaction Matter?
If you don’t know how to handle your accident, you might be on the hook for the cost of your collision. You could be responsible for paying for medical bills, vehicle damage and more. The costs add up after only a short time. West Palm Beach’s median household income is $49,054, and some residents may not be able to handle the financial impact of a collision.
Your reaction matters because you need to be active if you want compensation for your accident. If the other driver was negligent and caused the accident, you could attempt to recover damages. But you need evidence of their negligence and evidence of your expenses.
By working with a car accident attorney in West Palm Beach, you can learn more about receiving compensation. They can work with the insurance company to get you a fair payment or file a personal injury lawsuit on your behalf. But before they do that, they can tell you more about what you should do.
The sooner you call a car accident lawyer in Palm Beach, the sooner you can get a helping hand. 1800-Injured is an attorney and medical referral service. Contact us at 1800-Injured and start looking for the right attorney.