From minor fender benders to serious auto collisions, there are around 6 million car accidents across the U.S each year. Unfortunately, no matter how safely you operate your vehicle, drivers who are reckless, distracted, drunk, or otherwise negligent can cause a crash.
You may not know what steps you should take after a car accident. Being in an accident is stressful and the human body is not designed to handle a large amount of force and physical impact it absorbs during a high-impact car accident. No matter how minor the accident, how safe the car, and how tightly the seat belt was fastened, you’re likely going to experience a sense of confusion, not to mention the physical aches and pains following a collision.
In the moments following a collision, every decision matters. Failing to call 911, inadvertently admitting fault, and lack of documentation at the scene are just a few common mistakes that individuals make, only to be haunted by them later on when filing a claim.
If you have been in an accident in or around Missouri City, Texas, you need clarity on what steps to take so that your rights can be protected and you maintain the possibility to recover compensation for the other party’s negligence.
STEP 1 — CALL 911
After the car wreck, immediately determine whether anyone is injured. If there are injured parties, call 911 as soon as possible to get emergency personnel to the scene. Even if the incident was minor and everyone is cooperative, you should call the police. This can provide you with an official report, which you can give to your insurance provider.
STEP 2 — GET MEDICAL TREATMENT
After any accident, your personal health and safety should be your top priority. Even if you believe you’re uninjured, it’s important to be examined by medical personnel, whether this takes place at the scene of the accident or by going to the emergency room. There are injuries, including whiplash, that may not be felt right away. Getting medical treatment also provides essential documentation for the legitimacy of any injuries you claim to have received as part of the accident.
STEP 3 — DOCUMENT THE DETAILS
It’s relatively standard to get the insurance and contact information of the other parties involved in the accident, but there are more pieces of information to obtain, including:
- Names and contact information of any witnesses
- Photos of the scene
- Photos of the vehicles involved
- Photos of any physical injuries sustained
- The time and location of the accident
- Detailed accounts of anything you remember about the accident
Your memory of the accident can get fuzzy as time passes. The list of information above may help you keep a record of how the accident happened.
STEP 4 — CALL YOUR
The next step is contacting your insurance provider and reporting the accident to them. Some insurance companies require that they be notified within as few as two days. Remember to never admit fault or try to cast blame. Simply let your insurance company know the details of the accident so they can start building a claim for you; this insurance claim is the next step in getting the recovery you need. They may wish to send an insurance adjuster to the scene to assess damages.
STEP 5 — CONTACT A CAR ACCIDENT ATTORNEY IN MISSOURI CITY, TEXAS
After reporting the accident to your insurer, the next call should be to an experienced attorney. Even if the accident seemed minor, other factors could potentially arise later, and you should make sure you are legally protected. Remember, most insurance companies are looking to pay the least possible amount, and they do not always have your best interests in mind. An attorney is going to help advocate for your rights and interests, so you can be well protected in the case.
THE BOTTOM LINE
If you have been in a car accident, it is important to reach out to a personal injury attorney as soon as possible. Drivers are quick to blame one another, and it’s easy to make a mistake when dealing with savvy insurance representatives. As an experienced accident lawyer, I can gather and assess the evidence and help you fight for compensation. I serve clients in Missouri City, Texas as well as neighboring areas of Sugar Land, Katy, Friendswood, Pearland, and Fresno Texas.