Table of Contents
If you or someone close to you has been involved in a car accident, you probably know that it can cause great shock, sadness and leave you feeling frustrated over what has happened.
Although statistics show that the number of car accidents has significantly declined in states such as Colorado, according to the Denver Regional Council of Governments, around 68 percent of all traffic accidents in this city take place between two or more vehicles.
This shows that many people are still found in a situation forced to deal with complicated processes that can take both time and energy. For this reason, it is essential to do your research and, if you live in Denver, CO, for instance, look up a reputable auto accident lawyer Denver-based for consultation and assistance when trying to navigate the unknown procedures in the aftermath of a car accident.
You’re not alone in this and in this article, we’ll share the steps you can take following such an unfortunate event.
Take These 5 Steps After A Car Accident
Step One: Gather Info
You are probably much shaken up right after a car accident, but the first moments after such an event are crucial. The more knowledge you have on how to act, the easier it will be to behave calmly.
If you can, you should immediately write down the plate numbers of all vehicles involved. Get all information, such as insurance card information, driver’s address, other contact information, and the time and date of the accident.
This is pertinent information and pivotal when filing a claim with an insurance company, and without it, you might have a difficult time collecting the insurance money you’re entitled to.
Step Two: Write Down What Happened
It’s easy to forget how an accident happened, especially in traumatic events, and if someone was badly injured. You often become insecure and confused afterward. So write down or think through what happened soon afterward. If it helps you remember, you can also take pictures of the scene of the accident.
Examples of questions to consider:
- What did I do?
- How fast did I drive?
- What did the others involved do?
- Was it at an intersection, roundabout, or in a car park?
- What traffic rules applied at the site?
- Was it dark, rainy, or slippery?
Step Three: Call The Police
Following a car crash, it is advisable that you call the police as it’s the law in Colorado to report all traffic accidents that have resulted in an injury or any kind of property damage.
The call itself will also alert emergency medical response teams to the scene of the accident so that any person who might have been injured gets immediate medical treatment. Having an accident report prepared by the police is a critical piece of evidence that can help you when dealing with the insurance companies on your claim afterward. It is a document that is crucial when establishing negligence and liability and if a dispute occurs in the course of the insurance claim process.
When asked about the accident by the police, be truthful and honest when answering their questions about what exactly happened, with as much detail as you can but leave it to the police officers to investigate the accident on their own.
Step Four: Seek Medical Help
In the immediate aftermath, you should seek medical attention as soon as you can even if you think you’ve not been injured at all. With the body’s natural adrenaline response after such an event, your post-accident pain might be partially or completely masked and the pain might be delayed.
Even in the event of a minor accident, you should fill in the damage report and report the accident to the insurance company. The shock can make you not feel your discomfort and it can increase when the shock subsides. There is a principle that the insurance companies adhere to and that is that you should seek care and have your injuries documented for compensation to be paid out.
If you’ve been injured, a medical diagnosis is vital when submitting an insurance claim. Be sure to note down any prescribed medicine from your doctor, and any appointments or therapy sessions that you might have attended. If not, failing to follow your doctor’s advice can be understood by your insurance company that your injuries aren’t as serious as you claim them to be.
Also, remember to tell your doctor about any pre-existing injuries or health conditions as this will help them establish how greatly the accident has affected your overall health. Without this, the insurance company might claim that your injuries were pre-existing and not worsened by the accident itself.
Step Five: Call Your Insurance Company And Lawyer
Regardless of the type of accident you had, you must contact your insurance company as soon as possible. They will register any damages that have occurred in the accident, both material damage and personal injuries.
Unfortunately, many drivers involved in car accidents fail to notify the insurance company thinking this is the last thing they need to do. Even if you did nothing to cause this accident, you must contact your insurance company and report any injuries or damages.
If the other driver submits a claim against you, your insurance company will not have the means to defend you or negotiate on your part and leaving you to pay for medical bills and damages from your own pocket.
For further assistance, you should hire an experienced car accident lawyer who will guide you throughout the process, protect your rights and prevent you from agreeing and signing an unfair settlement.
While on the road, car accidents can happen at just about any moment and cause serious consequences, both physically, emotionally, and financially. It’s a dramatic situation and how you act at the scene of the accident can make a world of difference.
Make sure to gather info, write down everything you remember, dial up the police and seek medical attention. All of this is crucial for the needs of your insurance company and your lawyer to start handling your case.
Being prepared and informed about the steps needed to be taken after such an accident can protect you from unnecessary worries and ensure that you receive a just settlement offer.