What to do if you’ve been in a car accident 

personal injury lawyer

Two cars who crashed into another car on a interstate road

Car accidents can be very scary experiences. In the moments after a collision, those involved have a lot on their minds and can be distracted, which causes them to forget to do things that may ensure their safety or prevent further injury. After you have been checked for injuries, there are a few things you can do that may help you in the future if you need to file a claim or a lawsuit. This blog will go over four things you need to do if you’ve been in a car accident. 

  1. Check for Injuries and Get to Safety

The first thing you should always do after an accident is to check for injuries and call 911 if you or anyone in your vehicle have experienced any. Not all injuries are visible, it is very important to seek medical care after a collision so that you can be evaluated by a medical professional who can determine if you have any injuries that need treatment. It is a good idea to be medically evaluated even after a minor car crash so that a medical professional can rule out any injuries that you might not be aware of.  Common injuries in a car accident are:

  • Scrapes
  • Cuts
  • Whiplash
  • Broken bones
  • Brain injuries 
  • Internal bleeding

If no one is injured, your next call should be to the police so that they may file an accident report. After you’ve assessed injuries and called for help, you will need to move your car off the roadway if it is in drivable condition. Move your car to a safe place out of the way of traffic, turn on your hazard lights and turn your car off.  

  1. Minimize contact with those involved with the collision

Outside of exchanging information with the other driver or drivers, do not admit guilt or speak about the collision. Be cautious of sharing information with witnesses at the scene as well. Anything you say could be used against you in the future if the other driver files a lawsuit. The information you should exchange with the other driver or drivers is: 

  • Names
  • Phone numbers
  • Insurance information
  1. Gather information and take photos of the scene

Once you’ve exchanged information with the other driver or drivers at the scene, it is important to gather other information if possible. Try to collect:

  • Police report number
  • Police officers name and badge number
  • Witness names and phone numbers
  • Date time and location of the collision 
  • Any other details about the collision

Once you’ve gathered all of the necessary information, it’s time to take photos. 

Photos can be very useful when trying to prove damages and injuries and can help show how a collision occurred. When taking photos of the collision, you will want to capture:

  • Exterior photos of all vehicles involved
  • Interior photos of all vehicles involved
  • The scene of the collision
  • Damaged property
  • Your injuries
  • Your passenger’s injuries
  • Road conditions
  1. Contact an experienced personal injury lawyer

Insurance companies will often attempt to pay victims the lowest settlement possible. An experienced personal injury lawyer will be able to assess your individual situation and build your case, enabling you to receive the compensation you deserve for your injuries. A personal injury lawyer will also be knowledgeable about all relevant laws and procedural rules regarding your lawsuit. Your attorney will be able to inform you about deadlines that could bar you from recovering any damages if missed and ensure that all necessary documentation is filed in a timely and effective manner.