What to Do When You Get in a Car Accident: Your Step by Step Guide
If you are figuring out what to do when you get in a car accident directly after an accident (as in you’re sitting on the side of the road right now) then you are likely disoriented and confused. This guide provides you with the steps to take after a car accident. The steps are meant to help ensure your safety and may help you build a strong personal injury case, should the need arise.
It may feel crass or selfish to be thinking about insurance companies and money. But as car accident lawyers who have years of experience helping clients fight for compensation, we can say with confidence that thinking about your personal injury car accident case now can give you a better chance at regaining your health and stability (without going broke) later. And if you haven’t called a car accident lawyer, there is a good chance the other person already has.
So, no matter whether you’re looking for tips on what to do after a car accident which is not your fault, advice regarding what happens when you get in a car accident and it is your fault, or intel on what to do after a minor car accident, this guide is for you.
Checklist of steps to take after a car accident (immediately post-accident)
So… what do you do when someone hits your car? We’ve cut out all the extraneous information and given you the essentials steps.
- Stop the car and do not flee the scene.
- Check for injuries and call 9-1-1 if injuries are present. Call the local police if no injuries are involved. The police will write a report that can be helpful during legal negotiations.
- If all individuals involved in the accident have not sustained major injuries and your car is in a drivable condition, move it out of the way of traffic to prevent further injuries.
- Exchange information with the other drivers involved in the accident, witnesses, and the police on the scene. Get names, phone numbers, emails, addresses, and (where applicable) insurance names and policy numbers.
- Should you be healthy and able, and should the scene be safe, begin to gather information about the scene of your accident. This information can include:
- The date, time, and location of the accident, as well as weather conditions
- Pictures of the scene, including interiors and exteriors of all cars involved, road signs, and signs of the wreck (shattered glass, skid marks, potholes, etc.)
- The make, model, and license plate number of all cars involved in the accident
- Document any surrounding obstacles or elements that could have contributed to your accident, including potholes and construction.
- Document your injuries and, with their permission, the injuries of other individuals involved in the accident.
- Sign necessary police documents, but do not sign insurance documents without the presence of a lawyer.
- Do not admit guilt to anyone, even if you think you’re guilty. This includes apologizing for the accident or acknowledging even partial fault when discussing the accident with the other party.
- Call your car accident lawyer in Houston and The Woodlands. Experienced car accident lawyers such as those at Grimes and Fertitta can help those involved in a car crash in Houston and the surrounding areas to identify additional steps you should take and, if necessary, contact accident reconstruction specialists on your behalf.
Steps to take after a car accident (once you’re safe and at home):
- Make sure you’re happy with the law firm you choose to handle your personal injury car accident case. Don’t be afraid to get a second opinion. This is especially true if the law firm you’re speaking to tries to force you into a certain direction, attempts to charge up-front fees, or doesn’t communicate well.
- Your health and wellbeing should be your top priority. Continue to seek medical care if you incurred injuries. Check in with a doctor even if you don’t have obvious injuries. It is extremely wise to visit a doctor after you have been involved in an accident. Consider doing so even if you show no signs of major injuries. After a car accident, symptoms of injuries may not be immediately apparent. They may show up days or even weeks post-incident.
- Request (or have your lawyer request) a copy of the police report. Juries and judges are more likely to favor the unbiased report of a police officer.
- If you or a loved one has been injured, have your lawyer help you review the types of personal injury claims available to you. These can vary depending on the type of injury you or your loved ones sustained, who was at-fault for the accident, the types of vehicles involved, and whether or not a loved one passed away as a result of the accident. For example, depending on your case, you may want to work with a Houston truck accident lawyer, or you may have to start learning the answer to the question, “What is a wrongful death lawsuit?”
- Focus on recovery, be with your family, and let the team at Grimes & Fertitta support you as you stand your ground.
Want help knowing what to do when you get in a car accident? Call Grimes & Fertitta.
A skilled car accident lawyer at Grimes & Fertitta not only knows what to do when you get in a car accident, but can play a huge role in the outcome of your case. A small, client-oriented firm, we have established a reputation for keeping our clients’ best interests at heart.
Part of our strategy for success lies within our previous experience as insurance company lawyers. We have been on the other “side” of personal injury litigation. Our attorneys can anticipate the maneuvers insurance companies make to manipulate information in their favor. We know the strategies they use to make it harder for you to get the most compensation possible.
While Houston and The Woodlands may be synonymous with bad traffic, our clients know that at Grimes & Fertitta, they can also be synonymous with trustworthy, thorough, and strategic legal representation.
Work with a firm that treats you and your loved ones as more than just a case number. Contact Grimes and Fertitta by calling 713-224-7644 or reaching out to us online to schedule your free consultation and get your case off to a strong start today.
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