What should I do after a car accident?
If you haven’t been in a serious car accident before, the incident can be traumatizing. Knowing what to do after a car accident can help you feel confident throughout the process should you find yourself in one.
It’s best to document the accident and damages as much as possible to prepare for settlements, so you can be sure that you’re getting an appropriate settlement for the damages caused by the other party.
If you need help at any point in the process, a car accident lawyer at Haug Law Group is here for you. Call 844-428-4529 or send us a message to talk to a team member and get your free consultation.
What To Do After a Car Accident
After you’ve been in a car accident, the best thing that you can do is remain calm. Then follow these steps.
Call the Police
After the accident happens, the first thing that you need to do is call the police to report it. Once you have notified them of your location and the basic details of the accident, the police will come to the scene to assess the accident, discuss it with all parties involved (including any witnesses), and begin writing the police report.
If you don’t report the accident to the police, you won’t be able to collect compensation for damages.
Exchange Insurance Information
While waiting for the police, you’ll want to make sure to exchange information with the other driver(s), including insurance policy information, driver’s license information, your name, address, license plate number, and more. This allows you to easily report the accident to your insurance provider and stay on the same page with the other driver(s) throughout the process.
If there is any damage from the accident, including damage to your vehicle, personal possessions, and/or injuries to yourself or others, document them well. This way, you can have strong evidence for settling any claims when the other party is liable for your damage(s). This is especially important if you take claims to court.
Some ways you can collect evidence include: taking pictures or videos of the damages, documenting damages or any off-putting behavior in a note, and interviewing witnesses when possible.
Don’t Leave the Scene Until Told Otherwise
It’s important to stay at the scene of the accident until you’re told otherwise by the authorities. If you leave the scene too early or before police arrive, you could be accused of a hit-and-run or miss out on critical parts of the investigation.
Get Medical Help
It’s important to see a doctor right away if you have any injuries after a car accident. Since car accidents can result in hidden injuries, your condition should be fully assessed by your primary care provider or another doctor. Depending on your injuries, you may want to see an emergency or urgent care physician right after the accident.
You want to know all possible injuries or conditions you may have sustained during the accident, so you can be sure to claim all of the necessary injuries and related costs. This is especially helpful when an injury doesn’t appear severe at first but worsens over time. In these cases, early documentation will help prove that these injuries were noticed and monitored right after the accident.
Inform Your Insurance Provider
It’s your responsibility to report the accident to your insurance provider, no matter the details of the accident and whose fault it was. Insurance providers will take down the basic details of the accident and await the copy of the police report to begin settlement offers.
Get a Copy of the Police Report
It’s a good idea to obtain a copy of the accident’s police report for your records. If you decide that you want to take legal action to claim compensation, you’ll have a copy to show your lawyer.
Contact a Car Accident Lawyer
It’s a good idea to contact a car accident lawyer right away. A top Atlanta car accident lawyer from Haug Law Group can help you throughout the entire process after a car accident, even if you don’t end up taking the case to court. We can help you assess damages, collect evidence, investigate, and plan your best path forward.
How quickly do I need to file a car accident case?
Georgia’s statute of limitations defines the allotted time for bringing a claim to the local court, depending on the type of claim(s) you’ll be making. Outside of the statute of limitations, you will likely not be able to claim compensation through the local court.
When a loved one has died and the family wants to claim wrongful death, O.C.G.A. § 9-3-33 says that these claims must be filed within two years from the date of the accident to win compensation in court.
For personal injury claims, O.C.G.A. § 9-3-33 states that you must also file these within two years from the date of the accident. For personal property claims, O.C.G.A. § 9-3-32 allows up to four years from the date of the accident to win compensation through legal action.
Get Your Free Case Evaluation Today
At Haug Law Group, we offer free case evaluations to hear more about your case and answer any questions you have. We can help you get the compensation you deserve for the losses you’ve experienced, and we will work hard to win justice on your behalf.
Get your free case evaluation today at 844-428-4529 or send our team a message to get started now.