When you’ve just been involved in a car accident, preparing for the hours, days, weeks, and even months ahead may be the furthest thing from your mind—but it can also be the most important thing you do during this hectic time. Auto accidents are frightening, shocking, and among the most stressful things that people experience. But for some victims, the accident itself is only the beginning of the stress they’ll feel—especially if their injuries make it difficult or impossible for them go to back to work.
Staying as calm and collected as possible after a car accident can help you take the right steps towards getting your life back on track, and those steps begin while you’re still at the accident scene. The immediate aftermath of your car accident is a crucial time that can have significant consequences for both your physical and financial recovery and the better prepared you are to handle this time, the faster you’ll be able to move forward with your life.
The Nashville auto accident attorneys at Matt Hardin Law know the ins-and-outs of car accident claims. We also know that victims who act immediately and begin protecting themselves and their families often have the best outcomes, whether they’re pursuing compensation or just trying to get back to work as quickly as possible. After your accident, you should:
If you have access to a cell phone or smartphone, call 911 immediately and report the accident. Stay on the line with the dispatcher and give him or her as much information as you can, including your location, the number of vehicles involved, and the severity of injuries.
Police and emergency responders will soon arrive at your location. When they do, cooperate with them as much as possible. Answer any questions that the police officers need to complete their accident report, but don’t volunteer information and never admit fault, as further investigation may prove that the accident was unavoidable. You should also allow emergency responders to examine you at the accident scene for signs of injuries.
Before you leave the scene, get information from the other driver, including his or her name, contact number, email address, and insurance information. You should also get contact information from witnesses, as third-party eyewitness accounts can be valuable evidence if you pursue compensation for your injuries.
Use your cell phone, smartphone, or even a disposable camera to take pictures of the accident scene. In addition, write down what happened as soon as you’re able to do so. Include information like the lane you were traveling in, your speed, and the behavior of the other driver leading up to the crash.
If you were injured during the accident, you should immediately go to the hospital or a doctor’s office for a full physical examination. In addition to getting treatment for your injuries, your doctor will also examine you for internal injuries. Make sure to tell the doctor you were in an accident and ask that they provide you with a copy of your medical report. Seeking treatment right away for accident-related injuries and having proof that you did so is an important step if you’re planning on filing a claim for compensation.
To be eligible for compensation, you must report the accident to your auto insurance provider. As with the responding police officers, you should stick to the facts and never volunteer information or admit fault. Insurance adjusters and representatives can twist your words and find ways to reduce or even deny your claim based on the things you say.
After you’ve completed the steps above, your next step is to contact an attorney and begin concentrating on your recovery. Experienced car accident lawyers will negotiate with the insurance company on your behalf while using evidence and crash scene analysis to build a claim that maximizes your chances of getting the money you deserve.
At Matt Hardin Law, we know that your biggest priority after your car accident is getting better. We also know that a complete and successful recovery is difficult when you’re too hurt to work and worried about paying for medical bills and your family’s living expenses—not to mention dealing with the insurance company and its team of adjusters.
You shouldn’t have to pay for an accident that wasn’t your fault, and you shouldn’t let the stress of the accident get in the way of spending time with your family during this difficult time. Get in touch with our legal team today and let us fight on your behalf. Dial (615) 200-1111 or contact us via our online consultation form.