Auto accidents are a part of life in today’s world. More than 10 million auto accident injuries and over $200 billion were spent on automobile insurance premiums yearly in the US alone. Auto accidents can happen at any time and place.
However, if you have been involved in one, it is important to remain calm and speak with a lawyer. Your statements and actions can have a major impact on your insurance claim. Be sure not to let the trauma of the situation lead to these mistakes:
Not gathering evidence
The first mistake is not gathering evidence after the accident. This includes taking pictures, getting information from witnesses, etc. As soon as possible after the accident, take pictures of the scene, get copies of insurance papers, make notes about your injuries, etc. Then contact the police right away to file a report. Make sure that your witness statements are complete and accurate. Call an attorney for legal advice if you need to talk with someone who was hurt during the crash.
Leaving the scene of an auto accident
Another mistake many people make is leaving the scene of a car accident without talking to anyone. In most cases, it is illegal to leave the scene of a car collision without calling the police. Even if the person did nothing wrong, they can be charged with a crime and could lose their license. Be aware of traffic laws and know what to do when driving on public roads.
It would help if you never admitted fault to another driver in court because this would affect your case. Also, it may cause the other party to sue you for damages. Your best option is to deny responsibility for the crash. A good lawyer can help you with this decision.
Failing to report an auto accident
Just like admitting fault, failing to report an auto accident is bad. It is considered negligent in failing to report an auto accident. However, there are circumstances where it is okay not to report the accident. For example, you may fear retaliation from the at-fault party. Or maybe you don’t tell the truth. An experienced auto accident injury attorney will tell you whether or not reporting an accident is important.
Ignoring medical treatment
Getting medical treatment after an auto accident is also a mistake. Always follow the doctor’s instructions, whether it is pain medication or physical therapy. Do not ignore any appointments. Some injuries require surgery, so it is wise to go to the hospital immediately after the accident.
Not talking to the insurance
One final mistake that can lead to more trouble than it is worth is ignoring your insurance company when dealing with them after an auto accident. Often, a person will write off the claim, thinking the damage isn’t too severe. But if an insurance adjuster has already taken photos of the vehicle, they can prove how much damage occurred. This could result in your insurance premium going up. Talk to your insurer before deciding whether or not to accept damage claims.
An auto accident can ruin a person’s life. Unfortunately, these accidents happen all the time. People often make mistakes while dealing with situations, putting them in even bigger messes. While not every mistake will cost you money, some will. By learning from the mistakes above, you will have a better chance of recovering financially after an auto accident.
Zuella Montemayor did her degree in psychology at the University of Toronto. She is interested in mental health, wellness, and lifestyle.