A car accident is always a very upsetting experience. It happens in the midst of doing something you do every day with little thought. All of a sudden, you are thrown from your seat, and you know your life is going to change.
As frightening as it can be, it is important to keep calm after an accident. You know that you will have to go to the doctor if you are injured, and you know you will have to file an insurance claim. However, there are a few things that you should never do after a car accident.
Don’t Flee the Scene
When you are in a crash, the first thing you may think of is the points you will lose from your driver’s license and the money you will have to pay if the accident is your fault.
Sometimes people in this situation will panic and flee the scene. If you do this, you will be committing a crime. If you leave the scene of an accident before the police arrive, You can face as much as one year in jail. You will also receive 3 points on your license and lose your driving privileges for a year.
When you are in an accident, you must pull over to the side of the road. And you must call the police if anyone is injured or any of the cars have been damaged.
Do Not Admit to Guilt at the Scene
When you see that someone else is injured in a car crash, it is normal to feel empathy. If you were involved in the accident, you might feel guilty and responsible. You may want to tell the injured person that you are sorry.
Even though it is good to have empathy, you should avoid saying anything to make yourself seem responsible for the crash at the scene of the accident. If someone is injured, you should ask if they are okay and call an ambulance. You can even make sure they are comfortable.
When the police arrive, you should never admit guilt, even if you feel that the accident was your fault. It is easy to become disoriented after a collision, and there may be circumstances of which you are unaware. For example, you may have missed a stop sign, because it was hidden by a tree.
Tell the officer who arrives at the scene what you remember about the accident and provide them with your insurance information, driver’s license, and registration. You should always ask for a copy of the accident report.
Do Not Refuse Medical Treatment
If an ambulance arrives at the scene and the paramedics say you need to go with them, you should go. You may feel that you are not injured badly enough to go to the hospital, but the paramedics will know things about your condition that you may not. You will get X-rays and an examination at the hospital that you can later use in an insurance claim.
Even if you do not need emergency medical care, you should go to the doctor as soon as possible. You may have injuries that are not immediately apparent.
Do Not Let the Insurance Company Record You
When you file an insurance claim, the adjuster will want to ask you a few questions about your accident. They will ask to tape-record your answers, but you do not have to let them. Most car accident lawyers in the Bronx will advise you not to let them record you.
The insurance company will have a series of questions to ask you, and they may try to trip you up. They will ask you about things that you may not be able to remember. They may ask leading questions as well. It is not a good idea to let someone tape record you when you may be asked to remember events that you simply do not.
Do Not Take the Insurance Company’s First Offer
After your insurance claim is filed and you have sent in all of your documentation, the insurance company will investigate your claim. When they complete the investigation, they will either accept or deny your claim.
If they deny your claim, you should talk to an attorney about the possibility of a lawsuit. Some unscrupulous companies will try to say that your injuries existed before you had your accident or that you exaggerated your claim.
If the insurance company accepts your claim, they will make you a settlement offer. You should never accept the offer before you meet with an attorney.
An attorney can tell you if the offer is fair or not. In most cases, the company’s offer will be too low. If they offer you too little money, a personal injury lawyer can negotiate with them to get you a fair amount.
A car accident can disrupt your life. Knowing what to do and what not to do can make the road to recovery easier.