Avoid These 7 Post-car Accident Blunders (PDF)
Experiencing a car accident can be disorienting and overwhelming, even in the mildest of circumstances. Regardless of the severity of your injuries, the aftermath of an accident can leave you grappling with physical and mental trauma. It’s important to note that most drivers do not encounter car accidents frequently, and if you find yourself in your first one, you may feel uncertain about how to proceed. To prevent being held responsible for the accident, it’s crucial to steer clear of these seven actions.
Steering Clear of Blame, the 7 Actions to Avoid After a Car Accident
1. Before the arrival of the police leave the scene of the accident
It’s important to remember that in every state, it’s a legal requirement to remain at the scene of a car accident until certain obligations have been fulfilled. This typically involves exchanging information with the other driver, including your name, contact details, license plate number, and insurance carrier. However, if for any reason you are unable to provide this information at the scene, it’s crucial to promptly notify the police so that they can include it in their report. Adhering to these legal obligations can help ensure that you fulfill your responsibilities after a car accident and avoid potential legal repercussions.
2. Refuse to give info to police
Filing an accident report is a crucial step when pursuing an injury claim after a car accident. It’s important to work cooperatively with the police to ensure that you receive fair consideration. Refusing to file a report may raise suspicions and could potentially weaken the weight of any subsequent statements. It’s essential to remember to stick to the facts when speaking to officers at the scene, avoiding speculations about fault or issuing of tickets. Let the police determine those details, and provide accurate information about what happened during the accident. Keeping your statements factual and working with the police can help protect your rights and ensure a smooth process for filing an injury claim.
3. Admit fault or apologize
It’s crucial to be cautious with your words after a car accident, as apologizing or admitting fault could have unintended consequences when seeking injury compensation through legal action. Even if the facts indicate that you were not at fault in causing the accident, your words could be used against you. This means that you may need to explain any statements you made, and the at-fault driver or their insurer may attempt to shift blame onto you based on those statements. It’s important to be mindful of what you say after an accident to protect yourself and avoid potential complications in the legal process.
4. Don’t pay attention to your injuries
It’s important not to downplay any injuries sustained in a car accident and assume that rest alone will suffice. If there’s even a possibility that you may need emergency medical care, it’s crucial to call for an ambulance immediately. Even if you don’t believe your injuries are severe enough for an ER visit, it’s still beneficial to get checked out by a doctor or clinic within a few days. This will help confirm that there are no hidden ailments, such as a concussion or internal bleeding, and provide documentation of your injuries. Seeking medical attention promptly can ensure that any potential injuries are identified and treated in a timely manner, and can also serve as valuable evidence in any injury compensation claims.
5. Choosing not to receive medical treatment
When it comes to recovering from injuries sustained in a car accident, it’s crucial to listen to your doctor and adhere to their advice without fail. This includes following instructions for rest, work restrictions, medication, and physical therapy. By strictly adhering to your doctor’s guidance, you increase your chances of a successful recovery. It’s important to take care of yourself and follow your doctor’s recommendations to minimize the risk of being blamed for worsening your injuries by the at-fault driver. If you aggravate your injuries by not following your doctor’s orders, it may impact your ability to seek full compensation for your medical bills, as a jury or adjuster may reduce the amount awarded. Therefore, it’s vital to prioritize your health and diligently follow your doctor’s advice for the best possible recovery outcome.
6. Contact the insurance company of the at-fault driver
When filing an insurance claim after a car accident, the insurance adjuster may request a recorded statement from you, where they ask questions over the phone and document your responses. While it may seem innocuous, it’s important to remember that the adjuster works for the insurance provider, whose objective is to minimize their payout for the claim. Your words during the recorded statement can be used against you to reduce or even deny your claim. The crash report and your medical records should provide all the necessary information about your accident, making a recorded statement unnecessary. It’s crucial to be cautious and avoid providing any statements that could potentially be used against you by the insurance company, and instead rely on official documents to support your claim.
7. Waiting too long to file an injury claim
It’s essential to be aware of the deadline for filing a claim for compensation for your injuries after a car accident, as missing this deadline could result in losing your right to seek compensation. Each state has its own statute of limitations, which sets a specific timeframe within which you must file your claim. It’s crucial to be proactive and ensure you adhere to the applicable statute of limitations in your state to protect your legal rights and maximize your chances of recovering compensation for your injuries.
Talk to an ATLINJ Georgia Car Accident Lawyer
If you need help with a car accident, call us. We have years of experience helping injured victims like you and can advise you on what to expect during the legal process.
Costs associated with a car accident can be substantial and far-reaching. It’s essential to understand what you’re facing so you can financially protect yourself now and in the future. The good thing is you don’t have to go through this alone. Our attorneys can help you fight for the compensation you deserve following a devastating car accident injury.