What You Should Never Do After a Car Accident

Getting in a car accident is pretty scary, and not only because it can surprise and shake you up for a while after. There are also a ton of protocols and best practices that you are expected to know, which can get pretty intimidating and stressful. Especially if you’ve just started driving and don’t really know how insurance works, you might feel lost at the scene of a car accident. To help you be better prepared, here are a few things you should never do after getting in a car accident.

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Leave the Scene

It is very important to stay on the scene after being involved in a car accident. Chances are, if you leave the scene, the local police or highway patrol will be able to find evidence of your license plate number on traffic cameras or from eyewitnesses. They’ll then likely contact you or track you down, as they need your insurance details to settle the conflict between you and the other driver. According to Bernstein and Mello, you could even be charged with a felony or misdemeanor for a hit-and-run. So, even though it can seem tempting to speed off after a little accident, stick around so that you can go through the process of exchanging insurance and talking with the other driver without the police trying to track your car down.

Not hire an Injury Attorney

After having a car accident, people usually call for insurance companies to solve the case, forgetting (or having no clue) about personal injury lawyers. Insurance companies generally don’t solve the case for your benefit. They may try to mislead you, delay the compensation, or even pay it partially. Whereas, an experienced injury attorney will do everything to resolve the crash personally for you. They have in-depth knowledge of such cases and negotiations. A personal injury lawyer will collect the necessary facts, and evidence and will get the maximum amount of compensation for you.

Admit Fault

When you’ve been in a car accident, you should never admit fault, or say that you made a mistake that caused the accident. It is important that you never admit fault to anyone, but especially your insurance company and the insurance company of the other driver. According to Rogers Beltran, even one mistake can be used against you to end your case of being the injured party or no one being at fault. The raise in car insurance price that follows would be extremely expensive, so steer clear of verbally giving yourself any blame.

Fail to Gather Information and Evidence

While there will likely be police officers present helping to negotiate the communications between you and the other driver, you don’t want to fail to gather information and evidence yourself. Before you leave the scene of the crash, try to collect as much evidence as possible. Take pictures of the damage to the cars and the area. Valiente Mott recommends you also write down any details that could have affected the crash, such as the road conditions, the weather, the time of day, etc. Most importantly, get the information of the other driver, including their name, phone number, and insurance information.

It can be frightening or unsettling to be involved in a car accident, especially your first few times. But being prepared will make a huge difference. Avoid mistakes like these and you’ll have a much better chance of handling the effects of a car accident successfully.
Read this next: Essential Car Care for New Drivers

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