The following are some considerations for what to do if you are in a car accident.
- Seek treatment. Do not shrug off injuries. It may be that you are not hurt – if so that is great. But, it is best to get confirmation from a medical professional.
- Obtain Information. This is a lesson I learned when I was a teenager. I was involved in an accident, the driver asked that I not call the police and he offered me his insurance information – when I got home, uninjured luckily, my parents were furious I had not called the police. Luckily, the driver had provided accurate information and the claim was handled. I was lucky. But I learned the valuable lesson that if you are in an accident you must take steps to ensure that a record of what happened is created this is best done by calling the police. Even if the police do not investigate, you can ask for documentation of the insurance coverage, name, address and license information for any other drivers and passengers. Also, identify witnesses and get the contact information for the witnesses as well. If you are unable to do these things because of your injuries, then you should contact a lawyer sooner rather than later so that this information can be promptly gathered.
- Do Not Sign Anything Without Knowing Your Rights. If you were involved in an accident and either your insurance company or another driver’s insurance company asks you to sign something make sure you know your rights and what you may be giving up. If you have any questions, contact a lawyer – even if it is not Kapke & Willerth.
- Keep your records. It may seem obvious but frequently when someone is involved in an accident the last thing on his or her mind is to keep records. This, however, is very important. Sometimes individuals involved in an accident may want to keep journal or even video diaries. Just remember when doing this that anything said in those journals, diaries, blog posts or social media accounts can be used as evidence in a lawsuit.
- Do Not Delete Your Phone. Modern technology allows each of us to wander around all day with a computer in our pockets. This device contains an infinite amount of data. Some of that data could be relevant if you are injured in an accident. Moreover, if you are able to take pictures – do so. Take pictures of the scene, the vehicle – anything that might help explain what happened. If you do have evidence on your phone whether it is photos, text messages or social media posts – keep it.
- Contact a lawyer and Know Your Rights. Sometimes accidents are fender benders and legal action will not be required. However, sometimes, accidents can be significant, life-altering events. Independence car accident lawyers Kapke & Willerth have expertise in representing individuals in life-altering car accidents. Contacting a lawyer, sooner rather than late, will increase your chances of recovering evidence that may help your case. The attorneys at Kapke & Willerth are aware of what sources of evidence exist and how to take steps to preserve that evidence sooner rather than later. When you or a loved one is injured as the result of a car accident, these cases are best pursued by a lawyer qualified to evaluate all claims. The lawyers at Kapke & Willerth have the experience to advise you of your rights and the expertise to evaluate all potential sources of recovery.