Being involved in a motor vehicle accident is upsetting for anyone. It is a time when many people panic and don’t think clearly about what they need to do next. This is especially true for a person experiencing their first accident. I can tell you from experience when I had two accidents within ten days. I swear neither was my fault! However, I can promise you that getting your first accident out of the way definitely helps make the second time less confusing (assuming the accidents aren't all that big). For example, in my case, my mistake in the first accident was not calling the cops to have a car accident report made. This was all because of the nerves and panic that came along with the inexperience. This led to me having to pay out-of-pocket repair expenses. The second time around, the woman who rear ended me nearly begged me not to call the cops because she was already late for work. I panicked a little, but there was no way I was falling for it a second time.
It is crucial that certain things be done immediately following an accident, mainly for legal and insurance reasons, as you can tell from my first experience. Here are 6 steps to follow after you get into a car accident.
1. Stop Your Car And Exit
The most important thing to know about getting into this type of accident is that if you panic and drive away you will be facing serious legal problems as a result. Hit-and-run accidents are devastating to the victim and destructive to the driver that caused the accident. Regardless of who caused it, both drivers must get out of their car and remain on the scene. If possible, don't even move your car an inch from the location. This will help the cop determine which driver is being honest, and which is lying. Many of the people who are at fault will try to change up the story to seem less at fault.
2. Keep Calm and Collected
This is so important as well because as soon as you panic, you'll start forgetting to do some of the other important things you should never forget. If you need a minute to collect yourself, then take it!
3. Exchange Insurance Information
Once, you step outside your vehicle, it is crucial to exchange insurance information with the other driver in the event of an accident. This ensures that the person who caused the accident provides their insurance information to the driver they hit so that driver can file a claim for any injuries. Regardless of how upset each driver is, they are still obligated to hand over their insurance information.
4. Call Authorities
Law enforcement authorities must be called to the scene of the accident in order to be able to document it. The authorities will question both drivers as well as anyone else who happened to witness the action. Once the authorities have been called, it is very important to remain on the scene until they arrive, take their report and give both drivers permission to leave the scene of the accident. They will also make sure an ambulance is sent to the accident scene if anyone was injured as a result.
5. Take Photos Of The Accident
Taking photos of both cars involved in the accident as well as a shot of the accident scene itself. Writing down any relevant details is also a smart thing to do. This makes it easier when the time comes to consult a solicitor.
6. Talk To A Solicitor About A Claim
To file a personal injury claim stemming from a motor vehicle accident you will want to make sure you talk to a solicitor. They can help you build your case against the other driver, provided the accident was their fault. Your solicitor will consider all the details of the accident and advise you on what you need to do to prove your claim and receive financial compensation for any injuries you suffered during your accident. You will also need to talk to a solicitor if the driver that hit you does not have insurance to cover the cost of the damage to your car.
Keeping all of these things in mind after a motor vehicle accident is very important. In the U.K. the number 1 accident claims stem from car accidents, so don’t hesitate to pursue compensation for your injuries.