If you drive a car, statistically you are bound to get into a car accident. In fact, the average driver files a collision claim once every 19.7 years. Accidents are scary but what can be even scarier is if you fail to follow the correct protocol after an accident. Not taking the proper steps after an accident can cost you thousands of dollars. Therefore, it is important to review and follow the steps listed below after you are involved in a car accident.
Step 1: Call 911—the police and EMS—as soon as possible. Although it can often take time for local police arrive at the accident scene, it is important to fill out a police report. Often times if the police do not witness the accident, they will take a driver’s word for how the accident occurred. You do not want the other driver to have the only say in stating who is to blame.
Step 2: Exchange car insurance information. Ultimately, it is the insurance companies that determine who gets paid, for what, and how much. Without the other person’s insurance information it will make it more difficult to get an insurance claim resolved. Find out if your auto insurance carrier has a mobile app that stores your policy information, that will make accessing your information and reporting a claim easy.
Step 3: Take pictures and gather witnesses for your case. Today’s cell phone cameras allow for easy picture taking at the scene. Having photos of the accident location and surrounding area ensures that your lawyers know exactly where the accident took place; providing the insurance carriers with photos of any immediate damage to your car helps them evaluate how bad the accident may have been.
Step 4: Report the claim to your insurance company right away. Claims and payments can take weeks or months to be processed, so don’t let that get in the way of bringing a timely lawsuit.
Step 5: File a No-Fault application within 30 days of the accident to guarantee that your medical treatment gets paid by No-Fault, so that costs do not go to your private insurance or come out of your own pocket. Your lawyer can help fill out the application and guarantee that it is received before the deadline.
It is always best to hire a lawyer after a car accident, especially if you are feeling pain. According to the DMV you may need a personal Injury attorney if you want to get the highest possible compensation from an insurance company after an accident. The team of experienced Personal Injury attorneys at Greenberg Law P.C. has the skills to pursue any type of car accident and fight for the best possible results.