Car Accidents: 5 Tips
Car accidents are stressful and scary. When you’re in a car accident, chances are you’re not thinking clearly. That’s normal. But the moments after an accident can really affect you legally. Here are five tips to help prepare you if an accident occurs (hopefully, you won’t need them):
1. Don’t take the blame.
The accident may or may not have been your fault. In fact, in Mississippi, sometimes the blame can be shared. Don’t make the mistake of taking the blame for the accident at the scene. It’s okay to be concerned for everyone involved and to check on their safety, but don’t blame yourself. You may be wrong; and if you’re right, it’ll come out anyway.
2. Don’t move your vehicles.
Many times, I have clients who tell me what happened in an accident. The problem is, after the accident, the vehicles were moved by the parties. When the vehicles are moved after an accident, proving what happened is difficult. Trust me, proving what happened in a car accident is one of the most important aspects of a claim, and insurance companies will latch on to everything they can to keep the value of your claim down.
(Sometimes, state or local law requires you to move your vehicle after an accident. Of course, you should always comply with state or local law or when instructed by emergency personnel.)
3. Take pictures.
It’s extremely beneficial for your car accident attorney to be able to see the scene of the accident. Taking pictures at the accident scene will also help your injury lawyer and the insurance company come to a fair value of the claim. With the technology we have today, be sure you or someone else takes as many pictures as possible from as many angles as possible. Don’t forget to include pictures of your injuries, too, if you have them.
4. Get checked out.
When police or emergency personnel arrive, get checked out. At the accident, you may have an adrenaline rush and not feel injured or in pain. Often, symptoms don’t appear until after you’ve left the accident and gone home. As I said before, insurance companies will latch on to anything that will devalue your claim. If you tell the police or medical personnel that you’re fine, the insurance adjuster on your claim will hold that against you. Get checked out at the accident scene and go to the hospital if necessary. Tell the medical professionals your symptoms, and let them do their jobs.
5. Get information.
One crucial aspect for a personal injury claim is information. While at the scene, make sure all your information is correct for the police report. Be sure to get the name, address, telephone number, and insurance provider for the other party involved. Check for witnesses who may have seen the accident happen. If there are witnesses, get a name, address, and telephone number for each. The accident only happens once, and the only way to gather reliable information is at the scene. The more information you have, the better your chances are if you have to file a claim.
6. Bonus Tip: Call our car accident phone line at (662) 269-3832 or fill out our contact form here.
Hopefully, you won’t need these tips. But if you are in a car accident, make sure you protect yourself by trying to do these five things.