Whether you like it or not, there might come a time when you’ll be involved in a car accident. It doesn’t have to be your fault, as there are many careless people on the road and multiple other hazards that you might not notice until it’s too late.
If you do end up in an accident and you’re still conscious on the spot, follow these next steps. On the other hand, if you lose consciousness and get taken by the ambulance, proceed doing these steps once you’re back on your feet.
1. Check Yourself for Injuries
Obviously, you can skip this step if the ambulance has already taken you to the hospital. However, if you’re involved in a light accident, the first thing you should do is check yourself for injuries.
Due to the adrenaline, you might not realize that you’ve sustained injuries simply because you won’t feel any pain. It’s important to take a look over your entire body and see if you have any scratches, broken bones, and other visible injuries. If you’ve sustained serious injuries, it’s best not to move and just wait for emergency responders.
2. Check Your Passenger for Injuries
The obvious next step is to do the same for your passengers. If you know a bit of basic medical care, apply that knowledge depending on the given situation. Again, you can skip this step if they too were also taken by the ambulance.
3. Call an Emergency Operator and Wait for Help
Depending on where the accident has taken place, you might need to call a different number than the one you’re used to. For example, in the US, the default emergency number is 911. However, if you’re traveling abroad, you might want to consult this list of emergency numbers.
4. Exchange Information with the Other Involved Party
Just like with any vehicular accident, you need to prep the necessary info for the insurance company and your lawyer. Consulting a car accident attorney can help you a lot in this scenario. So you should call the lawyer if this is your first time getting involved in such an incident.
And that takes us to a two-in-one step, namely consulting with a lawyer. Make sure to call one that is specialized in car accidents and who operates within the jurisdiction where the accident has occurred. Otherwise, you might be left with an unjust decision from the authorities.
5. Document the Accident
Of course, exchanging information with the other involved parties and calling the insurance company and a lawyer is just the first step in an arduous legal process. Depending on the severity of the accident, it can take months or even years for your case to see a conclusion.
As such, you need to document everything that has happened at the accident scene if you want to stack up evidence against the other involved party. Take pictures, get video evidence, contact witnesses, etc. Do whatever is in your power to get evidence from the scene
6. Start the Claims Process
Once you’ve taken all the previous steps, it is high time to start the claims process. You may want to call both your insurer and your lawyer to do so. If you’re 100% sure that the accident was caused due to the other driver’s negligence, then you have nothing to fear but the whole world to gain.
Of course, you should also take note that the process can last for quite a while. Don’t think that you’ll be getting compensation any time soon. Instead, work with the appropriate attorney to get clear guidance throughout the entire process.
The Bottom Line
Going through a car accident can be painful in more ways than one. Make sure to follow all of these steps and listen carefully to what your attorney tells you to do. It’s highly recommended that you do everything by the book if you want to get full compensation.