What to do after a car accident?
Most Importantly, stop.
It may sound like a simple thing to do, but many people don’t. The law requires that you stop and exchange information with other parties involved in an accident – even if you are not at fault. You can face serious criminal charges for not stopping after an accident involving property damage or injury.
Report the Crash
It is important to file a detailed report following the accident to law enforcement and ensure that a police report is made. If one is seriously injured or the accident results in a death, by law you are required to report the crash to the local police or the Massachusetts State police. One musts also required to file a report to the Massachusetts Registry of Motor Vehicles.
Accept Medical Treatment
Let a team of medical professionals examine you immediately following the accident – it is best to do so at the scene – be sure to follow any and all medical advice given. A majority of injuries — including those to the neck, head and back – may not be apparent right away. Some could take days or weeks to present themselves. The effects of other injuries may be hidden due to the adrenaline caused by the accident.
You are required by law to exchange information with all parties involved in an accident. Including one’s name and contact information, driver license number, license plate number and auto insurance information. You should never admit fault or make any statements to law enforcement, insurance representatives or other parties at the scene.
Stay Safe at the Scene
Each year numerous secondary accidents take place due to motorists failing to take safety precautions in the wake of an accident. Remember to use four-way flashers whenever possible. If you have flares available it is always a good idea to use them. If you are capable of making your way to a safe location away from the scene of the accident be sure to do so.
Cooperate with law enforcement
Accidents are extremely stressful and devastating to those involved and people tend to react differently when in stressful situations. Remember to be polite and courteous to law enforcement and other officials on the scene – they are there to help you. Provide them with any required information, but remember to never give a statement of fault. Make sure to avoid speaking directly to others involved in the crash, bur be sure to always pay close attention to what other parties say. The accident report will be an important document in any future litigation. Always remember to be professional.
Document Accident Information
Proper documentation is important. Remember to carefully document everything you can about the scene. Utilize your cell phone to take as many pictures as possible. Get the name and contact information of other parties involved, all law enforcement officers at the scene, and of any witnesses. Look for traffic cameras or business security cameras that may have recorded the accident. Document everything you remember about the crash in great detail and what other parties said to you, to police, or to someone else at the scene. Keep a log of additional contacts made, including any insurance companies, follow up by law enforcement, body shops and towing companies. Make sure to have updated and detailed records of all medical treatment, bills and other paperwork received following an accident.
Notify your Insurance Company
It is important to immediately notify your insurance company following an accident. You are more than likely required by your insurance company to make immediate notification after an accident – it never hurts to be on top of this. Failure to notify your insurance company can result in a denial of your claim. While you are required to do notify your insurance provider regarding the accident, you are not required to give long detailed statements or admit fault. At some point during your accident claim your insurance company may become an adversary. At the Attorney Injury Group recommend making notification of the fact that an accident occurred. But speaking with an experienced lawyer is the best course of action before having additional interaction with your insurance carrier.
Contact an Attorney
Like we explained, knowing the full extent of injuries can be difficult to know in the immediate aftermath of an accident. It can take years for injuries to become fully present. The steps you take immediately following an accident usually have a long-term effect on your ability to collect compensation in the future for any damages. Speaking with an experienced Attorney Injury Group is typically free. This is often the best course of action for protecting your rights and the future financial well-being of you and your family.
If you or a loved one suffers from serious injury due to a car accident, call the experienced Massachusetts car accident lawyers at the Attorney Injury Group at 617-934-7000 for help. We will investigate your accident and injury claim, and work to seek the justice and the compensation you deserve.
Our experienced car accident lawyers will fight to make sure that you receive the compensation you deserve following an injury or any damages from a car accident. We will make sure to hold the negligent party accountable and will fight for you.