Sometimes a car accident is unavoidable. The best thing that you can do for yourself is to be prepared in case you find yourself a victim of one. Here are some good tips to remember:
Call the police from the accident scene and get a copy of your accident report when it’s available. Sometimes you may not want to call the police under the belief that the car accident was a minor “fender bender” and you fear that your insurance premium will increase. However, you should always call the police because often you cannot determine the seriousness of the accident immediately after it has happened. You may be in shock and feel relatively okay until the next day when you will feel the extent of the impact of the collision. If you later learn that you have personal injuries and want to file a claim, the fact that you did not call the police from the accident scene can only hurt your case.
Take photos. If you have a smartphone or a phone with a camera function, take photos of the location of the cars before they are moved. Take photos of the property damage to each car. Take photos of the license plates of the other vehicles. Take pictures of the driver and occupants of the other vehicles. Take photos of the interior of the vehicles to show if an airbag deployed, if windshields cracked or shattered and/or the condition of the contents of the car immediately following the accident that is an indication of the severity of the collision. These photos can later be used, if necessary, to show the extent of the impact and to show injuries immediately after the car accident.
If you are injured, go to the hospital. It is always better to be safe than sorry. Often, immediately following an accident, you do not feel much pain and are in shock that you were just involved in an accident. However, a few hours later or the next day, you will feel the impact of the collision and may learn that you have sustained personal injuries requiring ongoing treatment that were not apparent immediately following the accident. The insurance company will question whether your injuries were caused by the accident if you do not go to the hospital following the accident. For this reason, you should go to the hospital from the accident scene and get examined by emergency room doctors who may take x-rays and determine the extent of your injuries.