The moments following a car accident are critical to ensuring you get the proper protection you need for the case to be resolved smoothly. You must ensure that all evidence of the crash is accurately recorded and that you speak with the proper authorities to create impartial, legal records of the incident. This is critical to your success in pursuing compensation.
Still, it’s challenging to keep track of what needs to be done when your mind is racing due to the crash. To assist you in staying on track with building a case for a claim after an accident, the experienced Dallas car accident attorneys at Reyes Law have provided a thorough checklist for what you need to do in the moments following the crash.
The Most Important Steps You Must Take Following a Car Accident
Evidence of your crash and the damages incurred is a make-or-break factor in your ability to build a strong case or yourself. This is true whether you are attempting to file a lawsuit, or only filing a claim with your insurance provider. That being said, you must begin gathering this critical information straight away. The only way to do this, though, is to secure the scene of the accident first. It is both yours and the negligent driver’s responsibility to stop your vehicles safely and ensure that the physical evidence of the crash is kept intact and protected until the police arrive.
At the first opportunity, once your vehicles are stopped in a safe location, follow the guidelines below to respond to your car accident appropriately:
- Call the police. The police will first assist you in protecting the scene of the accident, ensuring your safety and that of passersby. It is vital that you speak to an officer regarding your accident so that they can fill out a police report, which will serve as a legal, third-party record of the incident. This will be transformative in the building of your legal case.
- Take photographs and record videos of the scene. You must ensure that you record every possible detail of the damages and injuries caused by the crash. If necessary, record a video of the vehicles and individuals from varying angles to ensure that there is no question as to what happened.
- Exchange personal information with all parties. Everyone who was involved in the incident must exchange their personal information (name, address, phone number) as well as insurance information.
- Seek medical attention. Even if you do not feel injured, you must seek the expertise of a medical professional. Often, victims are so full of adrenaline, and their minds are so occupied by all other matters that they do not realize they’ve been hurt. A physician can alert you to any injuries you may have incurred or warn you of symptoms to look out for in the time after the event.
- Report the incident to the DMV and your insurer. Though the laws vary slightly across states, you have only a limited time in which you can report an incident to the DMV. Once you file a report with them, you must then report it to your insurer so that they can open up a new claim for you.
Hire a Car Accident Lawyer
Once you have completed these steps, you must procure legal protection. Hiring a lawyer is the best way to ensure the evidence of your crash is not turned against you and that you are not denied the protection and compensation you deserve. Having an experienced car accident lawyer by your side is the best way to protect your rights as you pursue justice after a car crash. If you have been the victim of such an incident, get in touch with a car accident lawyer today.