Being involved in a car accident can be extremely overwhelming and devastating, even if you’re not at fault for the actual accident itself. Knowing what follow-up tasks after a car accident you need to tend to can help streamline the process of filing your case and seeking compensation. When you are familiar with various follow-up tasks after a car accident that you need to pay attention to, you are less likely to miss something important when you are filing a claim or seeking damages for the injuries and losses you may have experienced yourself during the accident.
1. Ensure Everyone is Okay
One of the most important follow-up tasks after a car accident is to ensure that everyone involved in the accident is okay, including those who may be inside another vehicle at the time of the accident itself. While your vehicle may require windshield repair or general collision repair, it’s imperative to make sure that anyone who was in the car accident is okay and does not require additional emergency medical attention, such as an ambulance.
2. Seek Medical Attention if Necessary
Another one of the most important follow-up tasks after a car accident is seeking medical attention anytime you believe it is necessary for you or anyone who may be injured and hurt from the accident. If you are unable to move from your vehicle or if another individual involved in the accident is also unable to crawl, walk, or exit their vehicle, call 911 immediately (if you are in the US). Calling an emergency number immediately will expedite the process of obtaining an ambulance at the site of the accident. You should also call the police following the call for an ambulance to ensure you have the proper officials at the accident when you need them most.
3. Call Your Insurance Agency Immediately
Calling your car insurance agency as quickly as possible after being involved in an accident is essential. Whether you believe you will require a vehicle alignment or an auto transmission rebuild, you will need to report your accident’s details to your insurance agency to inquire about potential coverage options and solutions that will work for you. Keep in mind that the amount of coverage you qualify for will depend on whether you were at fault for the accident or another party caused the accident at no fault of your own.
Depending on where you live and what state you reside in, you may also have an insurance policy that does not cover any damage done to your vehicle. If this is the case, you may be liable for repairing or replacing any parts in your vehicle that have been damaged or totaled on your dime. Always be sure to keep up with your current car insurance policy and agency to determine if they have shifted policies or the amount of coverage they are providing to their clients over time.
4. Take Photographic and Video Evidence of the Accident
Whether you need auto dent repairs or you believe you require extensive local engine repairs, taking photographic and video evidence is one of the most important follow-up tasks after a car accident that you will need to keep in mind. Taking as much evidence as possible while you are at the scene of an accident can help you prove your case once you are in front of a judge or if you are in a court of law defending your actions as a driver. The more photographic and video evidence you can obtain, the easier it will become to prove your side of the case.
However, it is also imperative to keep in mind that if you are injured in any capacity after being involved in an accident, it’s important to seek medical attention first. Calling a friend or relative to arrive at the scene of the accident to capture photos and video evidence is one option if you intend to head to a medical center first. You can also return to the scene of the accident after you have been discharged from your local hospital to obtain additional photos and in some cases, even video evidence, depending on the surrounding circumstances of the accident. Asking locals and nearby businesses for CCTV or digital camera recordings is another way to potentially collect the evidence you may need to prove your side of the story if you believe you were not at fault for your recent accident.
5. Collect Eyewitness Reports
Another one of the most important follow-up tasks after a car accident that you will need to remember is to collect eyewitness reports. At times, there may not be a way to take photographic or video evidence when you are involved in an accident due to the environment, risks, and even injuries you have sustained. Another way for you to prove your side of the story is to do so by collecting as many eyewitness reports as you can, especially if you can navigate the scene of the accident or crime even after you were involved yourself.
Collecting eyewitness reports in real time after an accident is only recommended if you are not injured or if you do not insist on pursuing additional medical attention that pertains to your incident. Eyewitness reports can be given in the form of written word, signed statements, and even on video. You can also ask potential eyewitnesses if they will be willing to act as credible witnesses if your case goes to court ahead of time, which will allow you to better prepare for your upcoming case.
6. Request Surrounding Evidence
After an automobile accident, it’s important to collect as much surrounding evidence as you can that can help to exonerate you once you are in front of a judge or jury. Taking photos and videos of the scene of the accident or any vehicles involved in the crash can go a long way in proving who is at fault, especially if you believe you were not at fault and are looking for ways to prove it to the public. You can also, in some cases, work together with law enforcement to learn more about any surrounding evidence that may be available or that may have been found at the scene of the accident you were involved in. While this method is not always viable, it may work if the local police department has also been actively involved with your case.
7. File an Official Police Report
You will also need to file an official police report, as this is one of the follow-up tasks after a car accident that you cannot forget about. Even if you are in a minor car accident, it is always recommended to contact the local police department to ask for an officer at the scene of the accident. Filing an official police report is advisable if you do not believe you were at fault for an accident or if you intend on pursuing damages and other potential charges or claims, depending on the surrounding circumstances of the actual incident itself.
Filing an official police report may also help you obtain additional photographic and video evidence, especially if you are unable to obtain the evidence you need for yourself on your own due to the injuries you have sustained. If you require immediate medical attention after an accident, calling the police department to file a report and request an officer is the best next step you can take. Once you have officially filed your case, you can then refer to it again in the future if you intend to pursue charges or file a claim with your insurance, especially if you are found not at fault.
8. Contact the Right Attorney
When it comes to follow-up tasks after a car accident it is important to keep in mind, that you may want to consider contacting and retaining the right attorney. Hiring a professional legal expert to represent you in a court of law is not only a way to improve your chances of having your case ruled in your favor, but it can also help you expedite the process of filing your case and getting in front of a judge. Contacting and retaining the right attorney can have a significant impact on the overall outcome of your case, regardless of the circumstances of the case and whether you were at fault for causing the accident.
Advantages of an Attorney
Hiring an attorney is extremely helpful whenever you’ve been involved in an auto accident, big or small. Obtaining a legal expert to represent you in a court of law is a way to streamline your case and any paperwork that must be filed in order to pursue your case. Professional attorneys who specialize in representing clients who have been involved in an auto accident can also help walk you through the process each and every step of the way.
Finding the Right Attorney for Your Case
If you are new to an area or unfamiliar with local law firms near you, ask local friends, family members, neighbors, and even co-workers for their recommendations when it comes to finding a lawyer to represent you. Taking the time to research independent attorneys and law firms in your area that represent auto accident victims is a way for you to learn more about your options before making your decision. You can also search for the right attorney for your needs online.
When you are browsing for an attorney for your auto accident online, you can do so by visiting their official websites, blogs, and social media pages. Compare the online presence of attorneys you’re interested in retaining, especially if you believe you have a large case that requires a heavy-duty approach. To verify the legitimacy of the attorney or firm you are thinking of hiring, be sure to seek out online testimonials from past clients. Find authentic and genuine testimonials with the use of third-party websites and social media to ensure that the lawyer you choose to obtain can be trusted and relied on when you need them most.
9. Find a Mechanic to Repair Your Vehicle
After an accident you were involved in, your vehicle may require auto body repair solutions. To ensure this job is done right, you will need to locate an auto shop you can trust. The right mechanic will not only offer you fair assessments and prices, but they will also do so by documenting all the work your vehicle requires from start to finish. Documentation is a key factor in proving your case, especially if you intend to pursue financial compensation for the injuries or damages you or your vehicle have sustained. With the right mechanic, you can move forward with your case knowing that another professional will have your back with evidence if necessary.
10. Pursue Your Case in a Court of Law
After you have visited your local auto repair shop for the repairs you require, you can then begin pursuing your case in a court of law. With the right legal representation and a plan of action in place, you can begin putting the evidence you have collected regarding the accident you were involved in together. The more evidence you have collected, organized, and ready to present, the easier it will be for you to demonstrate your side of the story once you are in front of a jury or even a singular judge.
Pursuing your case in a court of law is not always optimal, but it is possible if you believe you are owed significant damages. The right lawyer will ensure you are on the right path even before you begin. With the proper legal representation, streamline your experience for the best potential outcome possible.
Anytime you are involved in an accident, understanding which follow-up tasks after a car accident you need to pay attention to first is essential. The more prepared you are for a potential accident, the less likely you are to find yourself confused and bewildered once you are involved in an accident, regardless of the surrounding circumstances. When you know which follow-up tasks after a car accident you need to complete first, you can stay on track and obtain the help you need to ensure you are as protected and covered as possible.