Car accidents are far too common. If you have been fortunate enough to not have been involved in a car wreck, chances are you still know someone who has been. Maybe they have shared their story and a little about the compensation process with you, maybe not. Either way, it’s important to keep in mind that dealing with the aftermath of a collision can be a little less overwhelming if you take one step at a time.
Below are five steps you can take to safely set yourself up for the car accident claims process:
- Pull over safely
If your car is in working condition after the crash, then take a moment to get on the shoulder or a portion of the street that isn’t blocking the traffic flow. This way you don’t create another accident in the mix of trying to evaluate the damage.
- Call for help
After you get to a safer spot, it’s essential to call the local police department to come to the scene. This will not only help you to have proof of the event during the claims process, but it will save you from a criminal charge. Per state law, you must contact law enforcement if there is injury, death or significant property damage.
- Talk and take notes
Before leaving the scene, it’ll be helpful to speak to the other party involved and document as much of the scene as you can. Ask the other driver for their contact and insurance policy information and driver’s license and license plate number. And try and jot any notes down regarding the location of the scene and road conditions or, better yet, use your phone to take photos of the area and car damage.
- See a doctor
When your injuries don’t require an ambulance, it’s still necessary to receive medical attention. This is because even when you can’t see an injury, you could still be suffering from internal bleeding or organ injuries. Plus, the adrenaline of the high-stress event could hide some of the initial pain you feel.
- Begin claims process
Once you’ve had a moment to reflect on the accident, it’s best to file for compensation as soon as possible. This is because state law only allows claims to be made in a specific time frame, known as a statute of limitations.
An experienced personal injury attorney can address uncertainty you may have about the claims process or guide you through filing a lawsuit. Each case is unique, which is why professional legal aid is beneficial for getting the justice and the damages you deserve.