Denver Car Accident Attorneys/What to do in the event of an accident
Here’s a Checklist of What To Do in the Event of an Accident
The trauma of being involved in a motor vehicle accident can be a life-changing experience. It can be difficult to think clearly, and a serious injury to you or a passenger in your car can cause confusion, panic and a feeling of helplessness.
The Denver personal injury lawyers at Lonn Heymann Law Firm, P.C. remind you to always drive with caution, use your seat belt and avoid driver distractions like cell phones and other electronic devices.
If you are involved in an accident, here are some things to do to mitigate the shock and stress of the situation. The information is adapted from tips provided by Edmunds.
• If the accident is a minor one, move the vehicles off of the roadway to a safe location to avoid causing another collision. If the vehicles cannot be moved, remain in the vehicle with your seatbelt on until assistance arrives.
• Carry an emergency kit in your car. Some things you should have access to include a flashlight, a pen and paper to take down any important information, a digital camera, (most cellular phones now have a built-in camera), to visually document the accident, and specific information about any special medical needs or medications pertaining to the car’s occupants. Some vehicles are equipped with an emergency reflective triangle warning sign, usually mounted onto the inside of the trunk lid. If your vehicle has one, open the trunk to warn oncoming motorists.
• If possible, call your insurance carrier from the scene. Your insurance identification card will have a phone number on it for that purpose.
• In multi-vehicle accidents, and if serious injuries do not prevent you from doing so, exchange pertinent information with the other people involved in the crash. Important details include names, addresses, and phone numbers, the names of your insurance carriers and the policy numbers, and the license plate numbers of the vehicles involved. Write down a description of the other vehicles, such as make, model, year and color. Also jot down the specific location of the accident, and the direction you were traveling. It is advised that you NOT admit fault for any part of the collision at the scene. Simply cooperate with the law enforcement authorities and medical responders on scene, but do not offer any spontaneous information.
• If you are able, use a digital camera to document the accident scene surroundings, and take photos of all of the vehicles involved.
• Always file an official accident report, even if the accident appears minor and the driver(s) of any other cars involved suggest it is unnecessary. The police and your insurance carrier may require one in order to properly document the situation, and recover any financial compensation to which you are entitled.
• Familiarize yourself with the specifics regarding exactly what your auto insurance policy covers, and what it does not cover. Now is a good time to closely review your policy, before an accident happens.
• Remove any valuables from your vehicle if it will be towed away from the scene, and always get a business card and receipt or other official towing documentation from the tow truck driver before he leaves the scene.
• In some cases, in the event of a minor accident, you may be asked to work directly with the other driver(s) involved to work out compensation for any damages. This is not recommended – too many variables could change after you leave the scene, and at that point it may be too late to involve your insurance company. Also, although the other driver(s) may claim they are uninjured at the crash scene, they may say they have suffered an injury after the fact. This could result in another driver demanding a large financial settlement from your insurance company, and could even end up in a legal court case being filed against you.
A car accident, even a minor fender bender, can be a difficult experience to endure. If you or a loved one have suffered a serious injury, the way you handle the accident aftermath could effect your life for days, months and even years into the future.
The Denver personal injury attorneys at Lonn Heymann Law Firm, P.C. have years of legal expertise dealing with the many laws regarding who is at fault in the event of an accident. We understand being involved in an accident can be intimidating, as can dealing with insurance companies, doctors and law enforcement.
For a no obligation evaluation of your accident case and to learn more about protecting your legal rights, call our office today at 303-825-2223.