Being in a major car accident is a stressful, often life-altering experience, especially if you or a family member has been injured. Being informed about your rights after an accident can help make the experience less nerve-racking.
To begin with, do not leave the location of the accident, even if the other driver offers to exchange information with you.
Data from a police report may prove useful later on, so wait for the authorities to arrive, even if the other driver leaves.
Make note of the license plate number of the other vehicle or vehicles, and of the driver’s physical appearance. It may be necessary to establish who was driving the other vehicle.
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If any bystanders saw the accident and offer to talk to you, make a note of their contact information in case they do not stay until the authorities show up.
Information from witnesses who were not involved in the accident may prove invaluable in settlement discussions or a trial.
Second, do not assume you are unharmed if you do not immediately feel pain or discomfort. The stress of the accident may mask symptoms of an injury which may cause pre-existing health conditions to become aggravated. Do not wait to see a doctor if you think you may have been hurt.
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Third, do not let an insurance company rush you into signing anything, and do not cash any checks from an insurance company prematurely. Insurance providers want to pay as little as they can, and will often try to settle claims quickly. Once your case has been settled, the insurer will not pay for any medical care, even if your injuries are not fully healed.
The best way to protect your rights and make sure that your case is handled successfully is to consult an automotive accident lawyer.
Many people wonder if they really should consult an accident attorney if they are not seriously injured. There are several reasons why seeking advice from an experienced accident lawyer will help you. Law firms like Campbell & Associates tackle insurance companies on a daily basis, know how they operate, and know how they respond to different approaches.
Your attorney can work with the insurance company to obtain temporary payments for medical bills without damaging your chances for a settlement later. Look for a local attorney who knows the area, and knows the insurance adjusters who will be handling your case. Insurance companies know which attorneys have the experience to demand the maximum amount of compensation the law allows, and which lawyers have the willingness and skill to go to court if needed.
You may not understand all the factors leading to an accident, so it is never wise to acknowledge fault to anyone. You do not know if drugs or alcohol were involved, and you may not clearly remember specific details, such as the color of a traffic signal. There may have been other drivers involved that you did not even see. Your ability to receive payment for your injuries may be forfeited if you say the wrong thing.
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Call Campbell & Associates today at 704-333-0885 for a free consultation with any of our accident specialists.