Don’t Know What to Do After a Car Accident? Follow These Five Steps
There’s a lot to do after a car accident. In fact, many people feel paralyzed because they just don’t know what to do first. At Law Offices of Fernando D. Vargas, we understand how difficult this can be. That’s why we’ve created a simple five-step plan you can follow after a car accident. Read on to learn about them and then reach out to us at 909-982-0707 for a free case evaluation.
- Call the police
- Take pictures of the accident scene
- Take pictures of your injuries and seek medical attention
- Report the car accident to your insurance company
- Talk to a personal injury attorney and no one else
The police won’t always come but you should call them. They will likely ask about any injuries, the specific of the crash, etc. and may make a decision that they don’t need to come. However, you still need to report the accident.
The good news is that most everyone has a camera on them after a car accident these days. Use it to your advantage! Get all the info you can from the other driver, such as their insurance info, phone number, etc. but be sure to take pictures too. Get a picture of any damage to their vehicle, their license plate, etc. You can also take a picture of the street signs to show where it happened, and write down the VIN of the other driver’s car.
Many pieces of evidence of your injures will, on the surface, heal relatively quickly. If you have cuts, bruises, etc. then you should take quick photos of them. Your next step should be to get to the hospital or your doctor’s office. Many injuries, specifically soft tissue injuries and strains, may become worse as the area starts to swell and presses on nerves. The longer you wait to see the doctor, the more pain you’re likely going to endure.
Once you’re sure that you’re safe, it’s time to call your insurance company and report your accident. Arrange for a time for them to look at the car or arrange to have it towed to a repair facility. If they want to take the vehicle, that’s fine, but make sure to request photos of the damage and copies of the repair estimates. It’s also your insurer’s responsibility to file an SR1P with the Department of Motor Vehicles.
It’s common to want to talk about what’s happened to you. An insurance adjuster may call to see how you’re doing and you may feel compelled to answer them. No matter how friendly they may seem, remember that their goal is not to help you. Their goal is to pay as little as possible for your claim. They’re looking to gather evidence to use against you.
If an insurance adjuster calls you, take down their number and tell them you’ll call them back. Then reach out to a personal injury attorney and let them deal with the insurance company for you. If you’re ready now, simply call Law Offices of Fernando D. Vargas at 909-982-0707 for a free consultation.