When life throws you a major curveball, especially one that comes out of left field, it can be difficult to think on your toes quickly enough to react with grace and stay levelheaded. And one of the most sudden and, often literally, physically jolting examples is a car accident.
If you are involved in some sort of automobile wreck and the other driver is at fault, you are almost always owed some level or form of compensation. But this does not just come to you without any work. You must remain vigilant during the process, from the moment you step out of the car on the scene of the accident, in order to reap the full benefit of your legal rights.
Here are a few key considerations to follow immediately after an accident.
Document the Scene ASAP
Thorough documentation of an accident is paramount in your efforts to get compensation after a wreck. In the heat of a stressful moment, it can be really easy to skip some of the important steps. Even though you may be feeling frazzled, try your best to remember a few key things:
- Contact the Police. While there are many situations wherein contacting the police may seem unnecessary, when it comes to seeking compensation for damages a police report is a huge benefit. When all goes as it should, law enforcement serves as an unbiased party that will objectively record data and gather accounts from all perspectives. Documentation of objective truth in this way will come in handy later on.
- Take photographs. Photo evidence is also incredibly helpful when making a case for financial compensation. Pictures of any physical damage to property or to your person are helpful, as well as pictures of the surrounding area and relevant traffic signage.
- Talk to witnesses if available. While there will not always be eyewitnesses when an accident occurs, if there are it makes a big difference to seek them out and ask for their testimony. Collect their contact information if they are willing to share it.
- Collect all contact info from involved parties. This primarily means getting the insurance information, driver’s license number, and phone number of the other person involved in the accident. Take a picture of their license plate as well.
Seek Medical Attention if Necessary
In a perfect world, seeking medical attention will be totally unnecessary. But if you were caused any sort of physical harm or believe there is any chance that you may develop injuries as a result of the accident, visit a medical professional with urgency. This way there is a specific paper trail tracing any future ailments to the accident. Being proactive medically now means it will be harder for anyone to argue that your injuries are from sources other than the accident.
Get Estimates for Property Damage
Many people involved in traffic accidents in Sarasota and cities across the country with high accident rates often overlook the critical step of seeking estimates for damage after an accident. If you wait to get estimates until you are asked by the insurance adjuster, you may miss out on some compensation. Building a strong case ahead of time for the financial damages makes a big difference when it comes down to getting the money you deserve.
Contact an Experienced Lawyer
At the end of the day, it is always advisable to seek the support and guidance of an experienced legal team. With the help of skilled experts, you can rest easy knowing that you will get the compensation you deserve.