When you’ve been in an automobile accident, some essential things need to be done immediately following the occurrence to ensure your best interest. Sometimes, it is necessary for you to speak with an NYC personal injury attorney because the situation can become legally complicated. Before you talk to an NYC personal injury lawyer, get some things taken care of at the scene of the accident. Here is an automobile accident checklist of things to do:
– Do Not Leave the Scene of an Automobile Accident
Do not drive away even if it is a minor accident. If you drive away after an accident, especially if one or more people involved are injured or have died, you may be facing hit-and-run driving charges which are serious criminal charges.
– Turn Your Hazard Lights On.
– Exercise Good Accident Etiquette
– Be calm and polite.
– Use caution when discussing the accident.
– Do not apologize or admit guilt for the accident. If you apologize for anything involving the accident, you may be admitting to legal liability.
– Do not discuss who is at fault because it may not be evident who was to blame.
– Do not talk about the limits of your auto insurance policy.
– Do not talk to anyone about the incident except for your insurance company, your lawyer, and police.
– Do not speak or disclose any information to a representative from another insurance company, without the knowledge of your insurance company or attorney.
– Check on all drivers and passengers involved and make sure everyone is fine.
Call for emergency services for anyone who needs it. If a person has informed you of having back or neck pain, or they are unconscious, do not move them. Let the emergency medical services tend to those seriously injured.
– Make A Photo Record
Take pictures of any damage to your vehicle as soon as possible after the accident happened, and if possible, in the same place where the accident occurred. Pictures help your insurance adjuster determine how much you should be compensated for the damage to your car and they can also be used in court as evidence. Pictures can show who was at fault if there is any dispute about it.
– All vehicles involved in the auto accident should stay where the accident took place unless they interfere with traffic, then the vehicles should be moved out of traffic to a better location if they can be moved.
– Call the Police
Even if it is a minor accident and there are no serious injuries, call the police and have a police report filled out. Chances are you will need a police report to file a claim with your insurance company, even if it is just a claim for damage to your vehicle. Make sure to obtain the name and badge numbers of the officer at the scene of the accident.
– Exchange Information
Get all pertinent information from all the drivers involved such as their names, phone numbers, addresses, drivers’ license numbers, license plate number and the name of their insurance companies. If there are passengers, get their names, phone numbers, and addresses.
– Tell The Police Your Side of The Incident
When the police arrive, tell the investigating officer(s) exactly what happened, to the best of your ability. Do not guess or speculate about any of the facts if you are not certain. If the police ask if you are injured, and you’re not sure, say you aren’t sure. Don’t say that you are not injured.
– Notify Your Insurance Company
To start the claim process as soon as possible, let your insurance company know that you’ve been in an automobile accident. Be truthful when telling them about the circumstances of the accident and the extent of your injuries. If the insurance company discovered that you’ve lied to them about anything concerning the accident, you might experience denial of coverage. Many policies require immediate reporting and full cooperation. Find out if you have medical benefits as part of your insurance coverage.
– Contemplate Hiring an Attorney
If any person involved in the auto accident sustained any kind injury, it’s best to consult an experienced NYC personal injury attorney from an NYC personal injury law firm. An attorney could be of service to you, giving you a good defense if you’re at fault or help you get the most for your recovery if you were injured.