3 Tips To Protect Yourself Legally After A Car Accident
Car accidents are always unexpected and stressful. An incident like this can make people make sudden, poor choices that might affect them legally later. While the top priority in the aftermath of a car accident should obviously be to make sure everyone is OK, an important secondary concern should be taking steps to document the scene of the crash in order to protect yourself from a legal standpoint. Here are 3 tips that every driver should follow in the aftermath of a crash. If you have additional concerns, contact a local car crash attorney.
Always Call The Police
Even if the accident you were in is not that bad, you should still insist that a police report be filed. In some case, having a police report to show your insurance company can be the difference between getting your claim approved or denied. This will also prevent the other party from changing their story after they leave the scene of the accident. If the police do not respond, or if the other driver leaves the scene before they arrive, get a local police station to file a report in person as soon as possible.
Photograph More Than Just The Car
It's not uncommon for drivers to be equipped with smartphones today that can easily snap a few photos of the damage done to their car after an accident. But don't stop there. If you can do so without causing a fight, also take photographs of the other party's car and their license plate number. Document the street name you are currently on and any other part of the surrounding area that might have had something to do with the accident, like the location of a stop sign or red light. These photographs can provide a great visual aid if the case ever does make it into a courtroom.
Write A Comprehensive Report
While it's important to get a police report filed, you should also take the time as soon as possible to sit down and write out a comprehensive report of everything that led up to and caused the accident from your point of view. Your insurance company may likely ask for a report like this anyway, but it's important to get your thoughts on paper as soon as possible from a legal standpoint as well. The sooner you write the report, the more details you will remember. Include your speed at the time of the crash, where you were traveling to, the phone numbers of any witnesses, the printed out photographs that you took at the scene and anything else that you think might help.
In the aftermath of a car crash, focus first on making sure everyone is OK. But then quickly take steps to ensure that the scene of the accident is properly documented. You never know when a car crash might end up going to court. If you have concerns in this area, contact a car crash attorney like The Jaklitsch Law Group as soon as possible.