After the Accident
After you’re involved in an accident, there are steps you must take to ensure your own safety, that of other driver (or anyone else), and, to properly document the accident for law enforcement and insurance reasons. There are also some things you should never, ever do after a wreck.
Let’s say you’re involved in a wreck on Johnston Street, but it’s not a bad one. You’ve collided with another car but the damage is minor. No one appears to be injured at first glance. So you’re cool to drive away, right? Bad idea.
Do not leave the scene
Regardless of whether a wreck looks serious, you always have to stop, check on the other person involved, exchange insurance information and report it to law enforcement. If you don’t, you’ve committed a crime.
Do not start apologizing
Saying “I’m sorry” is another way of admitting that you are at fault. Some people tend to say this just because they are upset about the car accident. “Sorry, I wasn’t paying attention” may turn into an admission of liability if the matter goes to court.
Do not lose your temper:
A car crash is never a pleasant experience. Don’t start laying blame or yelling at the other driver, even if the wreck was their fault. It’s not going to fix anything. You need to be able to do everything you need to do in terms of the accident. Don’t forget to properly document the wreck: take photos, talk to witnesses, and get the right insurance information from the other motorist.
Do not skip reporting the accident:
If you don’t get a police report documenting your wreck, what proof do you have that it even happened? Be sure to call 911. In some areas, law enforcement doesn’t always respond to collisions unless there are injuries, but you always have the opportunity to get an accident report.
While the car wreck was probably traumatic and difficult enough, the hardest part often comes after. That’s why it’s important to follow up on everything. This can sometimes include getting legal and medical advice.
Do not talk with the other driver’s insurance company or attorney.
First of all, were you injured in the wreck? If so, you need to see a doctor right away. And, if another driver is threatening legal action against you, you’ll probably need to get a lawyer of your own.
Also, do not just accept the first offer that comes your way. Consider each offer carefully in light of your expenses, damages or medical bills, and discuss it with your attorney before going forward.
When you or a loved one has been injured, you want the best personal injury lawyer to handle the case. The lawyers of the Law Firm of L. Clayton Burgess have helped thousands of individuals across Louisiana get the results they deserve. You will speak with a lawyer for free who can answer your questions and inform you of your rights.