Car accidents are very common on the roads in the U.S. and the rest of the world today. In the US alone, there are over 6 million car accidents recorded each year. Out of these accidents, almost 3 million ends up with a major or minor injury, with 2 million of those resulting in permanent injury.
According to a car accident attorney in Birmingham, Alabama, regardless of whether you have been involved in a major or minor accident, it is important to know the things not to do following the accident. Knowing what to do will help prevent any further injury and you will also be able to successfully claim compensation.
Here are some of the mistakes that you should avoid making after a car wreck.
It is illegal to leave the scene of the accident. Regardless of whether there is an injury, fatality, or damage to property, do not drive away.
You should also avoid moving the car after an accident, even if it is obstructing other cars, until the right authorities arrive at the scene.
The first call that you should make when you have been involved in a car accident is to the police. In some states, failing to report a car crash is against the law. The police gather evidence that is valuable to insurance companies when handling claims.
It is also the work of the police to help determine who is at fault. Your lawyer will also need the police report to investigate your claim and calculate how much compensation you should get. Once you call the police, do not give any false information, stick to the acts as they are.
The at-fault insurance company can be very quick to offer a statement, especially if they sense that you might end up getting high compensation. Keep in mind that the first settlement offer is always less than you deserve. Try not to accept any offer without first consulting your lawyer.
One of the very common mistakes that many people make after a car accident is apologizing to the other driver or any other victim on the scene. An apology means you are feeling guilty and responsible for the accident. In other words, you are admitting to causing it. This will work against you if you choose to file a suit later.
Gather as much evidence as you can before the vehicles are towed away or moved by the police. Take pictures of the cars and the scene from different angles. However, do not tamper with the scene while doing so.
You can also take a video, if possible. Make sure that you capture anything that might be relevant to the accident such as tire marks. Do not assume that the police have the right records, you might just end up capturing something that they failed to and this can help with the case.
This is yet another mistake that many make just because they do not feel injured. It is important to seek medical attention immediately after an accident. Only a qualified practitioner can help detect any hidden injuries.
You might just end up saving your life. Taking long to see a doctor will give the at-fault insurance company reason to dismiss the medical record as not being related to the accident.
If you have been in an accident and you are wondering what you should or not do, speak to an experienced attorney for guidance. This way, you will avoid making mistakes that can end up being costly. Knowing the right thing to do can make or break your case.