What do I do After I'm in a Car Accident

Posted By Joey Gilbert Law || 10-Apr-2012

- What is the first thing I should do if I am in a car accident?

If you are hurt in any way, the first thing you should do is call 911. Give as much detail as possible for your location. If you are not hurt, and the car is in a safe location, you can get out of the car and get the other driver’s information. Try and get as much information as possible such as driver’s name, license plate number and most importantly, insurance information. If there are any witnesses try and get their information also and find out what they saw.

After the accident, should I stay in the car?

If you feel any pain or dizziness, stay in your vehicle. Try not to move too much or to change your position. Try and stay calm. Wait for the ambulance and paramedics to arrive before moving. You don’t want to aggravate an injury by trying to get out of your vehicle. It is better to wait for help to arrive than risk being permanently disabled.

If your car is not in a safe location, look around and exit the car if it is safe to do so and get to a safe location as quickly as possible. If the airbags have deployed, there may be a little haze in the car, but there is no need to rush to exit the vehicle unless you smell smoke or see fire. Remember to always check your surroundings when exiting your car so that you don’t get hit by oncoming traffic.

If I stay in the car will it hurt my case?

If you feel any pain, discomfort or dizziness after the accident, staying in the vehicle until help arrives is perfectly fine.

Will taking pictures help my case?

Absolutely. If you have any form of camera, take as many pictures as you can of the scene. Police do not always take pictures and those pictures may be difficult to locate. Try and take pictures of all vehicles as well as the area around the scene. If there are signal lights, stop signs or any other road signs that are in the area take pictures of those as well. Anything that may obstruct view, even a parked car should be taken immediately. The scene may look different several weeks later or even hours later. Also be sure to take pictures of any injuries at the time of the accident and follow up with new ones several days later as bruises develop. Do the same for any passengers in the vehicle.

Should I talk to the police when they arrive?

Talking to the police about the facts of the accident is ok. Avoid making any statements that would indicate that you were at fault in the accident. Any statements that you make to the police will likely be included in an accident report.

How soon after an accident should I contact my insurance company? Do I even need to contact them, if I wasn’t at fault?

Whether or not you were at fault, contact your insurance company as soon as possible after the accident. Stick to the facts and let the insurance company evaluate them. Meanwhile, hiring a personal injury attorney could be very important.

How soon after an accident should I contact an attorney?

If anyone is injured or has the possibility of being injured, contact a Reno personal injury attorney as soon as possible to understand your rights and the best way to proceed. Getting proper legal advice early in your case can make the difference between you receiving a just payout and being responsible for pay high medical bill. Regardless of whether you are the victim or the cause of the accident, you should always speak to an attorney.

Should I see a doctor after an accident even if I don’t feel any pain?

Anytime you are in an accident you should consider seeing a medical professional to make sure there are no hidden injuries. You may not feel the effects of an injury for several days. Scheduling a doctor’s visit the day of an accident is a wise precaution. When you do see the doctor, make sure to mention any complaint you may have, no matter how minor. Don’t play medical expert and evaluate the importance of a symptom. Let the doctor do his/her job.

Should I contact the other driver’s insurance company?

It is much better to have a Reno personal injury attorney communicate with the other driver’s insurance company. You may end up hurting your claim more than helping by speaking to their insurance. Insurance companies have a way that they twist your words and will then use it against you later on to provide you with a lower payout than you deserve. You may even make a statement that the insurance company uses to bar you from any recovery!

I wasn’t wearing my seatbelt when my car accident occurred. Can this be held against me in a suit for damages?

In Nevada, a person who is not wearing their seatbelt when they are the victim of a car accident often receives less of a recovery than someone who was wearing their seatbelt. Buckle Up!

The other driver’s insurance is requesting that I release my medical records. Should I?

Absolutely not! Do not release your health information to anyone other than YOUR attorney. You could lose your case by providing your medical information to the other driver’s insurance. Contact an attorney as soon as possible if anyone requests your medical records.

If I file a personal injury claim, will we settle out of court or go to trial?

It depends. Often cases settle without the need for extensive litigation. However, this depends largely on whether the insurance company provides a settlement figure that we feel is fair to you and your claim. Every personal injury claim is different and depends on the individual facts of the case. If the insurance company is denying liability or not offering a fair settlement, the case may have to go to trial.

Can I settle the auto accident claim on my own if I feel fine?

It is always best to go see a doctor to make sure there are no hidden injuries. You want to ensure that all your medical bills and loss of work are paid for. If you settle to early you may end up stuck with additional bills that you wouldn’t have been responsible if you waited.

I think that I caused the accident, What do I do?

Even though you may think that you caused the accident, or are partially at fault, it is always best to have an expert look at the facts and the reports. There are many factors that may contribute to the accident such as weather, manufacturing defects, alcohol etc. Make sure you do not make any statements that you are at fault at the scene of the accident. Any statements you make to the other party or the police will most likely be brought up with the insurance company.

How soon must I file a personal injury lawsuit before I lose the right to do so?

In Nevada you usually have 2 years to file your lawsuit. However, you don’t want to wait until the last minute as issues may arise that could cause you problems. You should contact a Reno accident attorney as soon as possible to discuss the proper way to handle your case.

How much does it cost to speak with you about my situation?

Nothing......….If you or a loved one is injured in an accident, call Joey Gilbert Law today for a free confidential consultation - (775) 574-4774

Categories: Personal Injury
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