In the aftermath of an accident, life can get very complicated. Your senses are bombarded with questions about injuries, repairs, talking to the police and filing an insurance claim — not to mention the scare-induced adrenaline rush — leaving you incapable of making a clear decision. That’s why it pays to know ahead of time what to do if you are involved in any type of accident.
The questions and answers below are only brief insights on what to do if you or someone you love has suffered an injury because of an accident. Don’t hesitate to contact the experienced personal injury attorneys of Holland & Lamoureux at (866) 225-4907 for a free initial consultation. We’ll help you get the compensation you deserve.
Frequently Asked Questions
- What do I do first?
- What facts do I need to gather?
- Do I have to report the accident?
- Do I need an attorney?
What do I do first?
The first thing to do at an accident is to determine the extent of everyone’s injuries. If the accident is a fender bender, emergency medical care might not be necessary. In minor accidents, resist the temptation to settle up with the other party on the spot. You may have suffered injuries which do not develop symptoms until days or even weeks after the accident.
If you are involved in an accident involving any injury at all, no matter how minor, call for medical assistance and the police as soon as possible. Doing so will provide proof of the accident and will allow for an immediate investigation of the scene of the accident. The police will advise you whether it’s required to move the vehicles from moving traffic, and an investigating officer will take statements of the all parties involved.
What facts do I need to gather?
After everyone is out of danger and any medical and police help have been summoned, obtain the following:
- Drivers’ names of all vehicles involved
- Drivers’ license numbers, addresses and phone numbers
- Drivers’ insurance companies and policy numbers
- License plate number, color, make, year and model of all cars involved
- Registered owners’ names and addresses of all vehicles involved
- Full name, address and phone number of occupants in any of the vehicles
- Full name, address and phone numbers of any motorcyclists, bicyclists, pedestrians or other parties involved
- Full name, address and phone number of any witnesses to the accident
- Police officer’s name, department and badge number
- Actual location of the accident
Do I have to report the accident?
Your auto insurance policy requires you to inform your insurer when you’ve been involved in an accident. As soon as you are able, you must call your insurer and file an accident report. You also should notify the other driver’s insurer of the accident. The insurance companies involved will then begin an investigation of the accident in order to determine who’s at fault. We suggest that if you or your passengers were injured in the accident, or if you believe the insurance company might try to claim you are not covered or you have any concerns about the adequacy of your coverage, you should contact an attorney. It’s imperative you ask the insurance company adjuster for a copy of the complete claim file. If the insurer doesn’t grant you a copy, file a complaint with your state’s department of insurance and contact a lawyer.
If you are involved in a ship or boating accident and the monetary damage to the vessel appears to be $500 or more, you are required to report the accident to the police or to coastal authorities. After reporting the accident, it is advisable that you speak with a boating accident attorney at our firm to learn about your legal entitlements.
Do I need an attorney?
Seeking legal counsel is a good idea. If you’ve been seriously injured in an accident, you’ll probably want a lawyer to help keep the lines of communication open between you and the insurance company and help you receive a fair settlement. At Holland & Lamoureux, P.A., we will promptly arrange for an attorney to consult with you free of charge to enable us to immediately take action on your behalf, making sure you get all the compensation you deserve. Contact our attorneys at (866) 225-4907 for a FREE CONSULTATION so we can discuss your case.
Let us help you if you need additional post accident information by calling or contacting us today.