If you’ve been injured in an accident, you probably have a lot of concerns, not the least of which is whether or not you’re at fault. Some cases are more clearcut than others. You were sitting at a light and another driver plows into the back of your car. Or you have a green light and the other driver violates your right of way. But just because you know you’re in the right, doesn’t mean that your case will necessarily be easy to prove. That’s why it’s essential to know exactly what to do if you’re involved in an accident that wasn’t your fault.
Five Things You Should Do At Any Accident Scene
While the focus of this article is what to do if you’re not at fault, there are some steps you should take at any scene, regardless of fault:
- Remain in Your Vehicle – Unless you know your vehicle is a hazard or you’re certain it’s absolutely safe to leave it, you should remain in your car. If you have to get out, make sure that you’re not stepping out into traffic.
- Call 911 – Whether you’re injured or not, you should call 911 and provide them the details of the accident, including location, direction of travel, vehicle descriptions, injury descriptions, and any other information that the 911 dispatcher needs to determine the types of resources that are required.
- Safely Take Photos and Videos – If you’re able to safely record a video of the scene, damage, and street signs, it may be invaluable to your case. Once police and fire rescue arrive, the scene will no longer be pristine.
- Take Information from Witnesses – Ask any law enforcement officer if witnesses stick around after an accident and they’ll give you the same answer: no. If you are lucky enough to talk to an independent witness — one that doesn’t know any of the parties involved in the accident — ask for their name and contact information and give that to the police.
- Seek Medical Treatment Immediately – If there’s any chance that you’re injured, allow rescue workers to examine you and possibly transport you to the hospital. Otherwise, followup with your own doctor.
How an Illinois Car Accident Attorney Can Help
Not all accidents have obvious fault. In fact, Illinois is a comparative negligence state, which means that damages are awarded based on the percentage of fault from each party. Having an attorney who is well versed in these types of accident cases can help you refute claims from insurers and other parties that you were partially to blame. In addition, car accident lawyers are familiar with the factors that go into making a justifiable claim. Illinois personal injury attorneys, like Hipskind & McAninch, LLC, offer free consultations and work on a contingency basis. That means that you can retain the services of an attorney without paying a cent out of pocket. If you’ve been injured in a car accident, contact a personal injury lawyer who specializes in automobile injuries today.