A vehicle accident is one of the most shocking and disturbing experiences a person can encounter in their life. Among the consequences of this event are not only physical and emotional recovery (which can take years and have many consequences), but also financial recovery after the incident. For many people, this latest recovery may seem insurmountable.
After a car accident, you should seek medical attention for your injuries and contact a qualified attorney to represent you. Having the help of an expert on your side will allow you to defend your rights against the big insurers while fighting for the well-deserved financial compensation for all the injuries and losses suffered. To protect your right to fair compensation, there are some steps you should follow, including:
- Stay on the scene: Do not leave the scene of the accident. It is against the law, and gives an appearance of guilt.
- Stay calm: You may feel nervous and confused, or even angry, after an accident. The best thing you can do is to remain calm and avoid any words or actions that could be used against you. Also, by staying calm, you’ll be better able to gather essential facts and details in the scene.
- Contact the Police: Police statements and traffic accident reports provide valuable evidence in determining the negligent or at-fault party. Additionally, police reports will identify all parties involved, detail witnesses and witness statements, and often include diagrams of the accident and other pertinent facts helpful to your car accident attorney.
- Admit no fault: Under no circumstances do you apologize for the accident, admit fault, or offer to pay for damages. Mere words like «I’m sorry» or offers to compensate the other party for damages can be interpreted as admissions of guilt.
- Avoid talking: Insurance companies will try to settle as quickly and as little as possible before you understand your rights. Every question you are asked is designed to narrow down or deny your claim, and any statement you make can be used against you later in the legal process. Don’t talk to insurance companies without an attorney present.
- Do not file a claim on your own: The insurance claims process is complex and governed by strict regulations and deadlines. You need a skilled attorney to handle the details properly from the beginning of your process, as one mistake could jeopardize the entire agreement, and it is extremely difficult, sometimes impossible, to correct mistakes once they have been made.