After an Accident
1. Always call the police. Even damage that appears minimal may cost more than you would want to pay out of pocket. And some injuries may not be apparent immediately.
2. If you think you are injured, tell the police to call for an EMS or go to the nearest ER.
3. Give the details of the accident only to the police and your insurance company. DO NOT admit fault. You do not know all the factors of the accident.
4. Once you rule out any injury, exchange insurance information with the other driver(s). If they are not willing to do so, write down the license plate number(s) of all vehicles involved right away. Your insurance company and the police will be able to identify the vehicle owner from the license plate number. Get names and phone numbers of any witnesses.
5. NEVER take a verbal or written commitment from another party to pay you directly for damage. Oftentimes, the damage is MUCH more than they thought and this is why we have insurance.
6. If it is safe to do so, take a picture of the accident scene, including damage to all vehicles. This could help to determine liability. After you have done this, move your vehicle to a safe place.
7. Contact your insurance company as soon as possible to report the accident. The longer you wait, the harder it will be to remember all of the details accurately.
8. You do not have to speak to anyone from the other insurance company.
9. It is your choice where to get your vehicle fixed. You do not have to go where your insurance company recommends.
10. Keep detailed records of everything related to the accident, including medical care and expenses. If you are injured, keep a daily diary of your level of pain, limitations and any other inconveniences caused by the injury.
Please consider Alvarez Law Office if you would like to consult with an attorney and please drive safely.