FAQ: What Should I Do If I’ve Have Been in an Accident?
Note to Readers: An accident can include, but is not limited to, auto, boat, slip-and-falls, and other personal injuries. Different factors may be excluded due to the nature of your accident, but the principles remain the same.
Call 911 immediately.
Check the scene to ensure you are safe. Make sure your family is safe as well. If possible, call the police immediately once your car has stopped moving and/or you’re safe out of the vehicle. Wait for the authorities to reach your location.
Gather information (if you can) from the other party.
After completing your evaluations (and you’re capable), write a complete summary of what you remember prior to your accident. Authorities will provide a thorough review in their police reports for your lawyer to evaluate. A short well-written description including the date, time, your activities prior, and the other party’s actions need to be documented as well.
Visit the hospital for an evaluation and/or injuries.
Allow the medics to check you for injuries and/or evaluation. Depending on the severity of your accident, visit the hospital for a complete evaluation including X-rays, bandages, and other medical needs. The emergency room views recent accident victims as a first-come, first-serve so you will be given an opportunity to see a doctor as soon as you reach the hospital.
Contact your car & health insurance companies.
Contact your car insurance company and inform them of the accident. Use written summary to explain your situation, provide a copy of your police report, discharge paperwork for the accident, and any information they would like to know regarding the situation. Fax these documents to your insurance company and prepare to find a personal injury lawyer to assist you.
Document as much information as possible.
Documentation is a critical component in assisting your future representative in your case. Remain vigilant by asking for copies of any and everything that you’ve received from your insurance company, employer, hospitals, and primary physician.
Determine if you have a personal injury claim prior to contacting a lawyer. Provide proof the other party is at fault for your injury then contact a professional to assist you.
See: “How do I know if I have a personal injury claim?” (https://www.personalinjurylawyerslosangeles.com/know-personal-injury-claim/)
Call a personal injury lawyer if you believe you have a personal injury case.
With your preparatory work completed, all you have to do is contact a professional to see if they’ll assist in your case. You’ll have an opportunity to explain, in detail, all that’s occurred since your accident and why you are limited in personal daily tasks necessary for a productive life.
Consider the following questions when writing your statement:
– Have you been taken out of work due to the injury?
– What were you able to accomplish prior to the limitations?
– Can you provide documentation and/or contact information for doctors treating you?
Remain open and honest with your personal injury lawyer.
Do NOT fabricate prior injuries into your case. You are held accountable for any false accusations taken into account after your accident.
See: “Damages in a Personal Injury Case”
Keep all of your appointments.
Appointments are very, very important in dealing with a personal injury case. Your lawyer, the insurance companies, and the defender is watching your every move. If you must cancel an appointment, inform your lawyer and provide documentation for the reason why.
Personal injuries can limit your ability to work, provide for your family, and cause financial struggles for your family. In the midst of these challenges, remain calm and observant.