A car accident can happen in an instant. You could be slowing down to stop for a red light and realize the driver behind you isn’t stopping. Or you could be exiting off a freeway ramp when a speeding car side swipes into your car as it tries to pass you. In a second, you feel the impact of the crash and your car veering out of control.
In the moments after crash, you likely are feeling a bit dazed. You first have to check if you have any injuries and figure out what to do next. What you might not realize is that if you make a mistake in the next minutes and even days or weeks, you could hurt your ability to receive maximum compensation for damage to your vehicle and any injuries you suffer.
So, what mistakes should you avoid after being involved in an auto accident? Here are five to keep in mind:
- Don’t neglect to make a police report of the accident. You want to have official documentation of what happened and what the damages to your vehicle and the other one involved are.
- Don’t neglect to gather the other driver’s contact information and insurance information.
- Don’t admit fault for the accident. You might not be at-fault at all. You may only be minimally liable. Yet if you admit fault, the other driver and their insurance company may claim you admitted fault and seek more compensation, or even sue you as a result.
- Don’t neglect to seek medical attention. You want documentation from a doctor about the seriousness of any injury you receive. Even if you don’t feel back or neck pain until the next day or several days later, you need to seek medical help right away.
- Don’t take an injury settlement from an insurance company without consulting a personal injury attorney. Often, insurance companies offer small settlements quickly to accident injury victims, to settle their case and move forward. Yet, your injuries may be severe enough you need more compensation than the insurance company is offering. An attorney can help ensure you receive proper compensation for your accident injuries.
By avoiding these mistakes, you more likely will settle your damage and injury claim faster. You can get the compensation you deserve if you suffer a serious or disabling injury. Then, you won’t have to worry if you have to miss work while you recover and can focus solely on getting better.