If you have been in a motor vehicle accident, it is easy to panic. However, the calmer and more prepared you are for the incident, the easier it may be to file a claim. Car accidents can easily shake and disoriented anyone – especially if the accident results in serious injuries. With the following tips, you can get your life back on track and hopefully receive the compensation that you deserve for your accident injuries.
What to Do After an Accident
- See a doctor. Even if you were a passenger in the accident, you need to seek medical attention right away. Serious injuries should receive immediate emergency medical attention. If you are not in an emergency situation, you still should seek treatment at your local hospital as soon as possible following the incident.
- Contact the police. Do not leave the scene of the accident. Instead, contact the police and report the accident right away. Even if the other party does not wish to involve law enforcement, having a police report could help prove liability later.
- Gather evidence. You need to provide compelling evidence that the other driver was acting negligently – and this is done by gathering information at the scene. If you can, take photographs of the scene, and write down your memories from what happened before, during, and after the accident. Also, get witness information – including names and contact information.
- Report the accident to your own auto insurance company. Even if you were not at-fault, you need to report the incident to your own insurer. That is because you are required to notify them of an accident promptly – or they could deny coverage.
What Not to do After an Accident
- Do not provide unnecessary information to insurance claims adjusters. An adjuster will contact you quickly after the accident to start the investigation, but be cautious about what information you give. Anything that you say can be used to lower your settlement or deny your claim altogether.
- Do not assume that you have minor injuries. Minor injuries can turn into long-term, debilitating injuries down the road – as most car accident injuries take several days or weeks to manifest. Waiting to receive treatment could harm your personal injury claim.
- Do not ignore witness statements. Even if you are not in the condition to take a witness’s statement, at the very least, get his or her contact information so that you can forward it on to a personal injury attorney.
- Do not accept a quick settlement. Insurers know that you are desperate. They know that you have medical bills, lost wages, and other costs piling up – so they will try to give you an offer that may seem high, but is actually severely inadequate. Do not accept any settlements without speaking to an attorney first.
Do Contact a Car Accident Attorney in Chicago Right Away
If you or a loved one was seriously injured in a car accident, contact a Chicago personal injury attorney as soon as possible. The attorneys at Malman Law can help with your claim. We understand what you are going through and want to help. Fight for the compensation that you deserve with the peace of mind of knowing that, with us, your best interests are being considered. Schedule your consultation now by calling our offices, or contact us online with your legal questions.