Most Louisiana drivers will get into an accident at some point in their lives. Even though they’re common, it’s hard to know what to do immediately following a motor vehicle accident.
Many drivers make critical mistakes during this time without even realizing it. That’s why it’s important to know how to handle yourself immediately after a car accident before you get into one.
Thoroughly check for injuries
The first step when you get into a car accident is to check if you or anyone in your car has been injured. You and your passengers might be in shock, so it’s important to do a thorough check.
A critical mistake that most people make in their first accident is underestimating their injuries. For example, that headache you thought was from the stress might actually be a concussion.
Underestimating your injuries at the time of the accident can be a huge mistake for the courtroom. Saying that you’re fine or refusing medical attention could delegitimize any injury claims you make at a later date.
Be careful about what you say
It’s a common instinct to say sorry or to brush off apologies immediately following an accident, as a way to deescalate and avoid confrontation. However, saying sorry can be considered admitting fault in many states.
It’s tempting to give your insurance company a plethora of information when you get into a car accident. However, it’s more likely that your car insurance company is looking for something that will allow them to pay you less.
Statements made to your car insurance company can backfire later. When possible, hire a lawyer to talk to your insurance company and the cops.
Act quickly in the days following
There is a limit to how long you can make a legal claim after a motor vehicle accident. If you know you might press charges or ask for compensation, it’s important to start gathering evidence and working with the proper channels immediately.
Calling the cops for every accident is essential to protecting yourself in the event of an accident. From there, you can research your options for compensation or defense.