Victims of car accidents are usually overwhelmed and confused as to what they should do after experiencing such an event. They might be wondering how to best proceed with settling an injury or vehicle damage claim against the other driver. To put the car accident behind you and proceed with your life, it’s best to hire an experienced car accident lawyer to help you make your claim and win the case.
Below we’ll give you some helpful pointers for settling a car accident claim.
What to do after a car accident occurs?
If you’ve been involved in a car crash you may be eligible for compensation to cover damages from medical bills, lost wages, car loss, and emotional distress. If you don’t know how to win a car accident case, knowing your legal rights and what you can do to recover compensation for your losses can go a long way. You should also consider hiring a car accident lawyer who will provide clarity and guidance in such confusing and difficult times.
So, here’s what you should do right after a car accident occurs:
- Contact the police. You must call 911 right after the accident because it’s the quickest way to report the accident and request EMS (emergency medical services).
- Check for injuries. Always check yourself and your passengers for injuries before checking on the other drivers involved in the crash.
- Collect evidence. Remember to gather information about the drivers, talk to witnesses, and take photos of your injuries, the damages to your car, and the area where the accident occurred. Photos can be of great help in a future insurance claim or lawsuit, helping you establish liability.
- Maintain records. To have a thorough car accident lawsuit you’ll need documentation like medical statements, car repairs, time-off requests, and other important documents.
- Seek medical treatment. Although you may feel fine, having a medical exam will ensure that any potential injuries are documented, which will assist you in your case and protect you from injuries that usually appear later on and can be quite severe.
- Contact a lawyer. After you’ve gathered all evidence and been medically examined, you must contact a car accident lawyer to guide you further on.
To have a successful personal injury claim you must provide evidence of the other driver’s negligence. But, each injury claim is different and the general steps include an investigation by the insurance adjuster, initial settlement offer, counteroffer or acceptance, and filing a personal injury lawsuit.
Personal injury lawsuits require proof of negligence to be successful. The elements of negligence to be proven are:
- Suffering damages can range from property to physical and emotional ones. This can be proven by providing medical reports, proof of vehicle damage, and other important documentation. For example, verified evidence of physical injuries can hold up firmly in court.
- Duty of care. Negligence requires the defendant to have violated the duty of care, meaning their carelessness is obvious in cases like driving under the influence. Also, if the duty of care was violated resulting in injury, this is a form of negligence that can be proven to win the case.
Remember that to win a lawsuit, proving negligence of the other drivers usually requires an experienced personal injury lawyer. While you recover from the accident, the lawyer should handle the details of your case and advocate for you with expertise, professionalism, and care.
What about a deadline for filing a claim after a car accident?
You should know that there is a deadline for filing a claim after a car accident, and each state has a Statute of Limitations for filing injury lawsuits. If you fail to do so before the deadline, you will lose your right to hold the other party liable for your damages and injuries.
These types of claims vary by state, and in some, for example, the deadline can be 2 years from the date of the crash. But, keep in mind that the deadline can be even shorter, and if it involves a government entity, it may be just a few months. That’s why having an experienced car accident lawyer is crucial.
After experiencing being injured in a car accident, it’s very important to reach out to a trusted personal injury lawyer as soon as possible. They understand the law related to proving fault and liability for damages and know the tactics used by insurance companies to avoid paying injury claims. This is essential for receiving compensation for any losses you may have suffered as a result of the car crash.