Being involved in a car accident can be a terrible experience, and being found guilty of causing one can be even worse.
Causing an accident can leave you shocked and unable to make proper decisions. However, it is important to act wisely to protect yourself and avoid being charged with a crime. Luckily, we are here to inform you about your options when found guilty of causing a car accident.
Check For Injuries
The first thing that you should do after a car accident is to check if you or your passengers, as well as the passengers of the other vehicle, are hurt. If there are any serious injuries, you should call an ambulance. If you believe that you are okay, you should still visit the ER and get yourself checked up. Some injuries are not visible until later, and some minor injuries and random pains can be signs of bigger health complications. Make sure to document your injuries, if any, and keep all the bills and records of medical treatment that resulted from the accident.
Report the Accident
You should move out of the way and to the side of the road to avoid any more collisions or road traffic. Put your hazard lights on, and make sure that your car is visible to oncoming drivers. Afterward, you should call the police even if you are at fault. The police will assess the whole situation, any injuries, and the extent of damage caused. A police report is crucial because it is the official documentation of the whole accident. If the police choose not to file one, then it is because the accident is minor, which should help your case.
Exchange Contact Information
Exchange information such as name, phone number, and insurance carrier, agency, and policy number with the other party. Request the other party’s information as well, even if you were the one at fault. Though, It is important to not admit that you were the cause of the accident throughout this process.
Make sure to take pictures of the whole accident scene. Take photos of your car and pictures of the other vehicle. Pictures of the surrounding area are also important because small things such as an unclear stop sign can reduce your liabilities. You should also collect witness statements from pedestrians or drivers. Documentation is important because it can help you protect your legal claim and avoid any potential changes in the story.
Consult With a Personal Injury Lawyer
If the accident happened while you were excessively speeding, drunk driving, or participating in any other illegal activities, you should consult a personal injury lawyer. Although in some areas like Spring Hill, you are given the time to negotiate with the plaintiff before litigation, you should still talk to a lawyer before a lawsuit is filed. You should consider consulting one of many Spring Hill personal injury lawyers because they can advise you and let you know what to expect from the situation. A lawyer can directly negotiate with insurance companies, make reasonable settlement offers, and win your case if it is taken to court.
Contact Your Insurance Company
You should contact your insurance company as soon as possible. This is because the other party will be making claims as well, so it is important to tell your insurance company your side of the story even if you were at fault. Your insurance company will most likely carry out their own investigation to find out whether the other party is held accountable for part of the accident too. They will also assess the injuries that occurred to the other party, as well as their vehicle’s damage.
Your insurance company should be aware that your car needs to be repaired or changed because your insurance provider may need to authorize you first. You should also provide your insurance company with any medical records, proof of injury, and bills for any treatment received. This will prevent you from receiving limited coverage and little financial support.
Unattended Vehicle Accident
In case you hit an unattended vehicle, you should still never just leave the crash scene. Fleeing the accident scene after an accident can leave you defenseless in court and will have you charged with severe criminal law charges like hefty fines and serving jail time. When crashing into an attended vehicle, you have a few options. You should first take images of the damage you caused. Then, you can either wait for its owner to return or look for them in surrounding shops or areas. While you wait, you can talk to any witnesses and ask for information. If you can’t wait or can’t find the owner of the car, you should leave a note with your information on the windshield. You must contact your insurance company immediately.
Causing an accident is a very unfortunate situation. As scary as it may sound, not following through with the correct process can leave you with harsh repercussions. This is why you should take the right actions, contact the police, seek medical help, and gather as much evidence and documentation as you can.