People don't often think about car accidents as soon as they get in their car or into another person's as in a ride-share vehicle, like Uber or Lyft. But, what should you do immediately after a car accident? This is important to know because the roads in Miami-Dade are not immune to collisions. Worse, many people don't know how to respond after an accident.
You can sustain injuries from even through minor car accidents, whether they are psychological, emotional, or physical. It's scary to think about, but being prepared for any auto collision can help make the aftermath and the claims process less stressful.
Below are the 10 most important steps to take after an auto accident. They will help you to protect your legal rights and ensure your safety.
- Stop immediately following a collision. Even if the collision is minor, it's important to stay at the accident scene. It is illegal to flee an accident scene.
- Evaluate the situation. Car accidents can cause confusion. It is crucial that you take the time to evaluate the situation. You and your passengers should be checked for injuries. You should determine if you can safely exit your vehicle. Also, consider the routes that are possible for safe exit. If possible, avoid moving someone who has sustained a spinal, neck or back injury.
- Make the accident visible. Accidents can cause traffic disruptions and many accidents are caused by drivers colliding into another vehicle. By turning on your vehicle's warning light, setting up reflectors and activating road flares, you can help prevent future accidents. You should also keep a flashlight in your vehicle. If you are involved in an accident at night, the flashlight can be carried with you to help make yourself visible.
- Notify police In case of an emergency, dial 911. If you have not suffered any serious injuries, call your local police department. When you file a claim with insurance, a detailed police report can help a lot. Paramedics should be called to any injury. If you are unsure if an injury has occurred, call paramedics to the scene.
- Keep track of the facts. Talk to the officers involved and be as honest and forthright as possible. Be sure not to admit fault. Don't feel you need to know everything. Don't speculate on the circumstances of the accident, or if you have been injured. It is fine to reply with "I don’t know" if you aren’t sure how the accident happened or if you sustained an injury.
- Photograph the scene. The popularity of cell phones has brought a major advantage: most people always have a camera with their. Photograph your vehicle and any visible damage. Also, take photos of the scene.
- Collect and exchange information. Usually, the responding officer will request insurance information from all involved drivers. If this doesn't happen, collect the names, addresses, and phone numbers of all those involved in the accident. This includes passengers and witnesses. Also, you should request to see the insurance cards of each vehicle and driver involved in an accident.
- Seek medical attention. After an accident, pain and injuries might not be apparent immediately. Most pain will begin to manifest a few days after the accident. If you are unsure if you have sustained injury, it is best to be cautious. It is not a bad idea to visit your local emergency department or urgent care center. They should have final say even if it is for your peace of mind.
- Notify your insurance company about the accident. Notify your insurance company immediately after a crash. Most policies require that you report an accident as soon as possible. You can also discuss your medical benefits and get your claim started. Keep a detailed record of all medical bills, updates, changes to health, and expenses related to crashes, as your claim process progresses.
- Contact an experienced Miami car accident lawyer. The role as an attorney does not simply consist of filing a lawsuit. When you contact our law firm, we will protect your rights and ensure that insurance companies do not immediately deny it. We can also help you understand how much your case is potentially worth and what could be expected should we win the case. Our attorney can help you get and protect valuable evidence, give legal advice before you make a statement to the insurance companies, ensure that you get the medical attention you require, and push insurers to handle your claim quickly and fairly. If your rights are violated, the best accident lawyers are those who are ready and willing to go to trial to get the compensation you deserve.