When there is an accident, it is easy to make mistakes because of shock, adrenaline, or confusion in the seconds after the accident. The legal and medical consequences of these mistakes might be far-reaching and perhaps disastrous.
Here are some common mistakes you need to avoid after a car accident to protect your rights.
Not Checking for Injuries
One of the biggest mistakes people make after being involved in a car accident is failing to check for injuries. Because shock and adrenaline can mask pain and suffering, it is critical to assess your health as well as the condition of your passengers. First and foremost, ensure that everyone is conscious and capable of moving about safely. If someone is injured or in agony, call 911 immediately. Seeking medical attention should be done regardless of how minor the injuries seem to be. Some injuries, such as whiplash or internal trauma, may not exhibit symptoms for many hours or even days after the accident.
Not Calling the Police
The police must be notified if an insurance claim of any type is filed as a result of an accident. Even though it is not proof that cannot be denied, the report presented by the officer who attended the call provides a starting point for insurance companies and any prospective litigation that may be made in the future. When the police are not involved, the matter becomes your word against the other drivers, which is a significantly more difficult issue to deal with.
Leaving the Accident Scene
According to hit-and-run laws, anybody involved in a car accident that causes injury or property damage is not permitted to leave the scene of the accident, regardless of who is at fault. Even though you may need to pull your car to the side of the road, neither you nor the other driver is entitled to leave the scene of the accident. Violations of the law may result in a misdemeanour or felony conviction, depending on the gravity of the violation.
Accepting blame at the scene of an accident is another typical mistake. Even if you believe you are at fault, you must avoid saying anything that might be used against you in the future. Under no circumstances should you make an apology or say anything that may be construed as an acknowledgement of regret.
Not Contacting an Attorney
In the case of a car accident, you may be faced with unexpected expenditures, including medical bills, missing wages, and vehicle repairs.
Then there’s the stress of the accident, as well as the anguish of any injuries you may have had. Fortunately, the law allows accident victims to file a personal injury claim to seek compensation for their injuries. An experienced car accident lawyer will advise you on the best course of action to take and will guide you through the process.
Neglecting to Gather Sufficient Evidence
If you want to strengthen your case, gather as much evidence as possible at the scene of the accident. Take thorough photos of the automobiles involved, as well as any visible injuries and the surrounding area. It is also critical to have witnesses provide their contact information and document any relevant information. This evidence will be very useful when dealing with insurance companies and legal agents.
Sending the Other Party’s Insurance Company Your Medical Bills
Insurance companies may hold onto such bills and enable them to be picked up by a collection agency, causing you more financial difficulty.
There is also the potential that you have access to better insurance coverage, which you may use. It is not the obligation of insurance companies to explain or disclose the rights and benefits available to all people. Working with a lawyer ensures that you will get professional advice on the coverage and financial benefits to which you are entitled. You are not required to bear any extra consequences as a result of the actions of another individual.
Not Being Honest
Although admitting responsibility to the other driver or passengers in a car accident is never a good idea, it is critical to be entirely honest with your personal injury attorney. Failure to do so might have disastrous consequences for your case. When informing an attorney about the circumstances leading up to the car accident, you should be as detailed and explicit as possible. Because lying or missing important information is a waste of time for everyone involved (and may land you in legal trouble), the only acceptable option is to be honest every time.