Getting into a car accident is one of the most stressful events. Drivers sometimes make deadly mistakes that result in collisions.
A car accident can have a detrimental impact on your life. While it may be unfortunate for you to get into an accident, it’s crucial to know what to do in the event it happens. Therefore, you need to always be prepared for any eventuality.
The most important thing is to be safe, but if an accident occurs, there are several things you need to know that can help save the situation. Here are the eight common mistakes people make after car accidents.
1. Not Obtaining Sufficient Evidence
When a car accident happens, the first thing to do is to collect as much information as possible. Take a few photos as you wait for a law enforcement officer to arrive.
Find out the number of cars and their occupants involved in the accident and if any person sustained injuries. When you have enough information regarding the accident, it will help ensure a positive outcome in your case.
2. Not Contacting Police or a Law Enforcement Officer
Every accident, whether minor or severe, needs to get a police response. Police prepare a crash report indicating what transpired in the place.
Getting a car crash report after getting involved in an accident is very vital. It helps prevent witnesses or other drivers from making any false claims.
The police report is sufficient evidence in case you need to solve any matter in a court of law. Having an official statement from the police is thus very crucial, even if you have your documentation and photos.
For example, a Texas crash report is an online report by police that contains all the details about the different car accidents. It helps explain the facts and the circumstances surrounding a particular car crash including all the parties involved, vehicles involved and their occupants and more.
A law enforcement officer can also help clear up any traffic snarl-ups or divert traffic away from the scene of the accident. This helps emergency responders get to victims quickly and get them to a medical facility as quick as possible.
Police can also help calm everyone down. Some people become very irritable after an accident, and so police can help keep them calm and keep everyone safe.
3. Admitting Liability
Never say “sorry” after getting involved in a car accident even if when at fault. While it may seem polite to apologize after you bump into another person’s vehicle, saying sorry doesn’t apply in car accidents.
Apologizing is usually taken as an admission of fault in the insurance company’s eyes. Most insurance companies are doing everything to deny claims and protect their liability. It’s not your job to assign liability after an accident, but be sure to always act per the facts.
Acting apologetic when it was the other drivers’ fault is even worse. They could use that statement to pin the entire responsibility on you, and your position in court severely diminishes. Also, you would not be able to sue for damages when you say sorry, even if you were not at fault.
4. Not Exchanging Insurance Information
Obtaining the other party’s contact information is crucial regardless of how minor or severe the accident is. Find out more information, including their names, license number, phone number, address, the insurance information, and the make or model of their vehicle.
5. Not Seeking Medical Attention Immediately After the Crash
After you get involved in a car accident, get some medical care. Even when you don’t feel any pain, don’t ignore seeking prompt medical treatment. Sometimes injury symptoms may not appear until later. Also, the insurance provider caters best if you seek medical care immediately after the crash.
It’s advisable to seek treatment as soon as possible. Some injuries may seem minor now but could become critical down the line if left untreated. Observe the legal deadlines lest you miss getting compensation for missing deadlines.
6. Not Contacting the Insurance Company Within the Set Timelines
After a car collision, be sure to contact the insurer. Failing to notify the insurance provider immediately could prevent you from getting compensated for your injuries.
Be the first to contact them after the crash. If they discover it before you report, they may force you to record a statement that will be in their favor so that they will force you to settle for less than you deserve.
You need to abide by the set timelines to avoid missing out on a chance for a settlement. So, make sure that you submit everything on time to be fully compensated.
7. Accepting the First Insurance Settlement Offer
Never accept the first settlement offer because, most of the time, it is always not what you deserve. Be sure to go through the offer and confirm it is what you deserve. Insurance companies are looking for a chance to pay you as little as possible.
If you are quick to accept the first offer, that may be the end of the story. Usually, the insurance company will not reopen your case even if you discover you were shortchanged.
Be sure that the cover will be enough to cater to all your expenses, including all the medical costs. Never sign any agreements for any settlements without having your attorney first reviewing it.
8. Not Hiring an Attorney
You need to have legal representation if you suffer severe injuries in a car crash. The lawyer can help protect your best interests and rights.
A lawyer will collect evidence, further investigate your case, negotiate with your insurance adjusters, build a compelling case on your behalf and protect all your other interest while you recover from injuries sustained in the accident.
A lot of people make crucial mistakes in the aftermath of a car crash. If you make these mistakes, you’ll not only jeopardize your injury lawsuit and car insurance claim but also can be emotionally and physically exhausting and costly.