Car accidents are startling, jarring, and often result in physical pain and emotional trauma. And while the effects of a serious car crash can last for years, you are never more vulnerable than you are in the minutes, hours, and days after the collision.
It’s during this window of time that you’ll face many important decisions. What you do – and what you don’t do, for that matter – will have a huge impact on how this unfortunate situation unfolds.
5 Mistakes You Should Avoid
The severity of your accident will obviously determine the best course of action for you to take in the immediate aftermath of the collision, but there are some mistakes you’ll want to avoid making – regardless of what happens. Check them out.
1. Leaving The Scene Of The Accident
It doesn’t matter what city, state, or jurisdiction you’re in, leaving the scene of an accident is considered a crime (and taken very seriously). The severity of the accident makes the charge even more serious. While leaving the scene after bumping a parked car might result in a ticket and small fine, deliberately driving away from an accident in which someone is injured or killed can result in serious jail time.
2. Admitting Guilt
It’s easy to start apologizing to the other driver(s) in an accident, but hold back. As strange as it may feel to withhold apologies, this restraint is important from a legal perspective. Even saying something as innocent as “I’m sorry” could be construed as admitting guilt. It’s best to avoid unnecessary conversation with the other individuals and wait to speak with law enforcement.
3. Failing To Call The Police
If you find yourself in a car accident, it may be tempting to try and handle the situation without police involvement. You and the other driver(s) may feel like it’ll be cheaper and easier to keep police reports, insurance claims, and all of the other complicated processes out of it, but this is a huge mistake. In a situation where you’re the victim, this will prevent you from getting the sort of compensation you deserve for medical and vehicle-related issues.
4. Talking To The Insurance Company
As soon as a police report is filed, you’re going to be pressured to speak with insurance companies. While they’ll make it seem totally harmless, it’s in your best interests to speak with an attorney first.
“Insurance companies are always hard at work, attempting to deny settlement payments or pay minimum amounts of money for car accidents and related injuries and losses,” explains Tate Law Offices, P.C. “Additionally, insurance companies may record phone calls and use portions of what you say in attempts to deny you fair compensation.”
5. Failing To See A Medical Professional
Finally, don’t put off seeing a qualified medical professional if there are any indications that you may have suffered an injury – regardless of how minor. Prompt medical attention is paramount in a case involving injuries. The longer you wait, the more your diagnosis will be questioned by insurance companies and the court of law.
Car Accidents – Look Out For Yourself
Being “nice” is a great attribute, but it can often lead you astray in situations where there are a lot of emotions at play. Niceness leads to placating, which leads to indecisiveness and a lack of proper action.
The other individuals in the accident, the insurance companies, and each party involved are looking out for themselves – you have to do the same. Protect yourself, tell the truth, avoid the mistakes in this article, and everything will be fine.
If you are interested in even more car-related articles and information from us here at Bit Rebels then we have a lot to choose from.