With an increasing number of vehicles on the road, there is a higher risk of being involved in an automobile accident. Accidents can happen at any moment and may be devastating. It is important to know what you should do if you find yourself involved in a car accident.
If you have been involved in an automobile accident, first and foremost stop. Never drive away from the scene of an accident, even if it is a minor “fender bender.” Safely move over to the side of the road and out of the way of oncoming traffic. Law enforcement should always be contacted. In some cases, responding law enforcement will gather the necessary information from the parties involved. However, if law enforcement does not respond to the scene then all parties should exchange information. You should get information from all parties involved, including name, contact information, insurance information, and information of all vehicles involved.
If there are witnesses, make sure to gather their contact information. Even if another driver admits fault. People regularly change their stories and you do not want to be in a “he said, she said” situation.
You should notify your insurance company as soon as possible if you have been involved in an accident. Calling your insurance agent at the scene is best in order to know what information you will need to process your claim and what should be expected during the claims process. Ensure that the accident is documented by taking photos of all vehicles involved. In the event you have suffered injuries resulting from the accident, make sure to take pictures of your injuries as well. Injuries may not be noticeable right away but can become so in the days following the accident. Whether you think you are injured or not, it is recommended you see a doctor.
Accidents are unexpected. Knowing what you should do beforehand is the best way to be prepared if and when an accident should happen.
Scott McDonald is a California native who graduated from Pepperdine Law School in 2008. He has been aggressively litigating cases in Personal Injury and Bankruptcy Law for nearly a decade. Mr. McDonald prides himself in being anything but a “typical” attorney. His unique and very personal approach to practicing law has helped numerous clients obtain their goals and get the legal relief they need.
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