“I Just Got Into A Car Accident! What Should I Do?”
Florida has one of the highest rates of car accidents in the country. In a state of 21 million people, The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FLHSMV) crash dashboard shows that more than 400,000 accidents occur annually. This amounts to more than 1,000 accidents every day!
At that moment when an accident occurs, it can be hard to keep a clear mind. Emotional shock and physical injury make it hard to focus on what to do first. That said, if you’re ever involved in an accident, here are the actions you should take to ensure that you have a solid case for insurance claims and injury compensation.
Make Sure Everyone Is OK
Your first priority is making sure that you and your passengers are physically unhurt. If the impact of the accident doesn’t stop your vehicle, pull over to the side of the road and turn on your hazard lights. If anyone is severely hurt/unable to move, call an ambulance immediately. Take note of your location so the emergency response team can find you.
Call the Police
Failing to report an accident is illegal. Your only excuse for not notifying the police is that you are physically incapacitated. Do not leave the scene of the accident until the police have arrived.
Document Evidence with Pictures and/or Video
Almost everyone today has a smartphone. For your own records and to assist with the insurance claim, take pictures of your vehicle, the scene of the accident, the other person’s vehicle/license plate and any damage.
Tip: Take note of any buildings with surveillance cameras in the area.
Gather Information About the Other Driver and Identify Witnesses
As you wait for the police, take the chance to gather as much information about the other driver as you can. Take note of their: name, contact information, insurance policy number, vehicle registration number, vehicle make and model, and driver’s license number. If there are any witnesses, try to get their contact information and statements on video. The more information you can get, the better.
Call Your Insurance Company
Your insurance company should be notified of the accident, whether you are at fault or not. Depending on your policy, if you are at fault for the accident, you may still be eligible for compensation from your own insurance company.
Get a Lawyer
You may not think you need one, but hiring a lawyer after a car accident is an essential decision. Insurance companies generally try to pay out the minimum amount for claims. If you have medical bills or loss of income due to the accident, hiring an attorney can help you get the right amount of compensation you need to get back on your feet.
At The Lewis Law Group, we’ve been representing motor vehicle accident victims across the Treasure Coast since 1975. We understand the stress and heartache that accidents can cause. Victims often have to deal with pain from physical injuries, expensive medical treatments, car insurance claim hassles and the inconvenience of being without a vehicle.
Our experienced, personal-injury attorneys have handled hundreds of accident cases involving cars, trucks, motorcycles and other vehicles. You can rely on us to recover your losses and get maximum compensation, so you can get your life back on track. Contact us for a FREE case evaluation. If you don’t get paid, we don’t get paid!