What to Do After a Car Accident

by sarahjones on September 19, 2012

So you’ve gotten into a minor fender bender or a more serious car accident. Usually when these situations occur, your mind is racing with a million thoughts. Is everyone okay? Did I hurt anybody? What does my car look like? How much will all of this cost me? Well, it’s important to remain calm as you will have several steps that you need to take to ensure that everything runs smoothly.

Check for People

Before you do anything else, you want to make sure that everyone is safe. If a child is stuck in a seat belt or a person is trapped inside of a burning vehicle, you want to get everyone to safety first. As a general rule of thumb, it is generally not advisable to move any injured people who are in a safe place. You may wind up aggravating them further. Check your own being to make sure you aren’t cut, bleeding or in extreme pain. If anyone is citing injuries, call an ambulance right away.

Make Phone Calls

Some people would prefer to handle car crashes and accidents themselves. However, it’s really always best to call the police. If you wind up needing to call an attorney for problems related to the crash, you might find yourself in a bit of a predicament if there is no police report on record. It’s always better to have all of the details recorded in a legal manner in case they need to refer back to them. Furthermore, the police may be able to assist you if you aren’t quite sure what to do. If it’s late out or you’re in an abandoned or bad area, you should consider calling someone to come and stay with you. It can be dangerous to sit in your car as it could be hit, but it could be dangerous to stand outside in a rough neighborhood too.

Exchange Insurance Info

Another step that you want to take is to exchange insurance information with the person. Again, in order to have a paper trail of everything, it is generally better to go through insurance. Let’s say that someone hits you, and the person tells you not to worry and that he or she will just pay for the repairs. How can you be certain that the person ever calls you again? If both parties do not have insurance, then there will be bigger problems with which to deal.

Document Injuries

Another reason why you want to have a paper trail is because people can claim injuries months down the road, and you do not want to be sued by the individual’s lawyer. However, you should also document your own injuries right away, so you are able to prove that they were a result of the car accident.

Getting into a car accident is serious business, and some people become very confused once the accident has occurred. However, going into a state of panic is not going to help anyone. Remain as calm as possible, and follow the aforementioned steps for smooth sailing.

Author’s BIO:

David Benowitz is one of the founders of Price Benowitz LLP and selected as one of the Top 100 attorneys of Washington, DC by National Trial Lawyers association. He is licensed to practice law as Maryland injury attorney and spent his career fighting his client’s rights.




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