What should I do if I’m involved in a car accident?

It’s important that you try to remain calm.
Remain at the Scene of the Accident
You must remain at the scene of the accident. If you leave and someone has been injured or lost their life, you could be criminally charged as a hit-and-run driver. Do not leave until you have reported the accident to the local police.

Check on All Drivers and Passengers
Check with all persons involved and assess their personal injuries. Seek medical attention for anyone who has been seriously injured. If a person is unconscious, or is not able to move on their own, don’t move them until medical assistance arrives.

Call the Police
Dial 911 if there is substantial property damage, physical injury, or fatality. State how the accident happened, but do not apologize to the officer or to any persons involved. Make a note of the police officer’s name and badge number.

Assess Property Damage
When you have confirmed that there are no serious injuries, assess the property damage. Note if any items are damaged inside the vehicle as well, such as, mobile phones, laptops, etc. Make sure all angles of the vehicle are assessed.

Take Pictures
Take pictures of all vehicles involved in the accident as soon as possible. It is best to get these pictures at the scene of the accident, whenever possible.

Exchange Information
Take a note of the names, numbers, addresses, drivers’ license numbers, license plate numbers, and basic insurance information from all parties involved. This includes passengers.
Again, do not apologize for anything at the scene. For example, if you say, “I’m so sorry, I didn’t see you! Are you hurt?” Your statements may be used against you and you may be held at fault for the accident. Sometimes fault is not clear right away.

Talk to Witnesses
Take the name, number, and address of anyone who witnessed the accident. Ask them what they saw, and take notes of it. Speak with people that live in the neighborhood or frequent the area, and ask if they have witnessed other accidents in the area.

Inform Your Insurance Company
Report the accident to your insurance company as soon as possible. If you were injured, do not go into detail about your injuries, just state that you were injured and you are being treated by a physician.

Obtain the Police Report
The accident report is typically ready for pick-up in 3-5 days after the accident. You can go to the local police station where the accident occurred or obtain a copy online. Make sure you agree with what has been noted on the report. Keep a copy handy because you will need it.

Keep a Log of Your Medical Treatment
Keep a log of any physicians, physical therapists, chiropractors, or other medical professionals that provided you medical treatment. Keep a detailed account of the treatments or medications you receive. Keep a log of any out of pocket expenses.

Get an Estimate of any Property Damage
Sometimes insurance companies have their own repair facilities. You may use their facilities for convenience or obtain your own estimate. If you don’t feel your car has been properly evaluated, get at least two independent estimates of your choice.

Limit Your Discussions about the Accident
You will need to discuss your property damage with the insurance company. Limit your statements to the car damage and repair process itself, and do not discuss your injuries with anyone except your attorney. Inform the insurance company you have counsel immediately.

Consider Hiring an Attorney
Consider hiring an experienced attorney that can help you make the right decisions and put your mind at ease. An attorney will make sure you are compensated for all your losses, including lost wages, pain and suffering, and even a loss of consortium in your marriage.
Contact Williams and Associates today to speak with an experienced attorney in the personal injury process. Call now for a free consultation. You owe us no fees unless we obtain a recovery in your favor.678-954-5739

What are the steps involved in my personal injury claim?
AThe first step you should take after getting injured is to obtain a police or incident report. If you were involved in a trucking or car accident, call the police right away. The police will complete a report of your incident. The incident report is the most neutral proponent of your injury claim and will be regarded heavily as evidence. Then, you should seek medical care.
Waiting days after you injury to seek medical attention will weaken your case. Be sure to document diagnosis, treatment, prescriptions, and expenses. Also be sure to document any days you missed work, had to leave early, or were placed on light duty. The next thing you should do is contact an experienced attorney. We can help you received the proper medical help and accurately document your damages so that you are compensated for your losses.
I was hit in an accident, how much is my case worth?
AThe value of your personal injury claim is directly related to the extent of your injuries and your damages. Damages include physical pain and suffering, loss of companionship, lost wages, property damage, medical expenses, and so forth. No matter how big or small you think your claim is, you won’t receive the compensation you are entitled to without a knowledgeable attorney.
The adjuster will not respond to my calls, do I need an attorney?
AThe adjuster may be using a delay tactic to try and decrease the value of your claim. It is in your best interest to contact an attorney, because the insurance adjuster is looking out for the best interest of the insurance company. Be advised that your phone calls are likely being recorded and anything you say can be used against you. If you hire an attorney, your attorney will represent you and your best interests.
Do I have to pay medical bills upfront?
AMost providers will work with you on setting up a payment plan or “hold agreement”. If you are working with a reputable attorney, most medical providers will treat you on an attorney-lien basis. Then, you will not have to pay any out of pocket expenses upfront. Our firm has experience navigating personal injury lawsuits and can give you sound advice regarding your medical expenses.
I didn’t go to the hospital, but now I’m in pain. Can I still pursue a personal injury claim?
AYes. As stated earlier, if you don’t seek immediate medical attention, it may harm your case. However, properly documented records and tests can validate the seriousness of your injuries, even though you didn’t seek medical attention right away.
What is mediation?
AMediation is an informal, voluntary, and confidential way used to resolve disputes without the need to go to court. Mediation involves a neutral third party mediator who helps both sides come to an agreement.
If I have a traffic citation, should I just pay it?
AWhen you pay a ticket, it is an admission of guilt. There are also several long and short term factors to consider before simply just paying the fine. These factors include the amount of the fine, penalties, points accrued on your license, car insurance premium increases, and much more. An experienced attorney can advise you on the long and short term consequences of paying your ticket.