Whether you’re a kid with a newly-minted driver’s license or a seasoned vet behind the wheel, the moment after a car accident can be a disorienting and harrowing experience. Immediately after getting in a crash, you’re asked to get out of your vehicle and document everything with forensic exactness to ensure that you aren’t taken advantage of. It's hard enough to document everything you need even if you’re lucky to only suffer damage to your vehicle and walk away physically unharmed. But if you’re one of the one in three drivers and passengers who suffer an injury in a car wreck, you’re still expected to be at the top of your game in a moment where you may be in extreme pain. It isn’t fair, but it’s how the system works.
To help you navigate this confusing moment in time, here are a few things you can do to protect yourself and your interests.
After you have confirmed that everyone in your vehicle is in stable condition, get out of the car and start taking photos and video of the accident on your phone. Document your location on the street. Do everything you can to protect the scene. Exchange information with the other driver. If your car is drivable, DO NOT MOVE IT BEFORE THE AUTHORITIES ARRIVE. Any potential movement could invalidate the accident right from the start. Only move to a safe location after the police arrive and are able to survey the accident as it happened.
Once the authorities arrive, be as truthful with them as you can be. Make sure to disclose any injuries you may be feeling, however minor, and provide the facts of the accident to the best of your recollection. When your accident is accurately documented by the proper authorities, Attorney Sgt. Pike and his team are in a much better position to help you.
Putting off medical care in any situation can have adverse effects on your wellbeing, but failing to do so immediately after an accident can also hurt your case. When you do seek medical care, tell the doctor about every specific area of your body that is in pain or that has suffered any trauma. Remember: even if you think the injury is minor, it’s important to tell your doctor about it. Many seemingly minor injuries can take a while to fully manifest, and eventually you could end up with a serious health complication.
If you fail to effectively document your accident injuries, the insurance company or corporate wrongdoer will say you are making them up because you did not complain immediately after the accident. It is also important that you seek out a doctor who specializes in accident injuries. Many doctors typically minimize injuries unless there is obvious trauma such as a broken arm. Even an emergency room or trusted family doctor can miss serious injuries to your spine, soft tissues, extremities, or brain.
The most important decision you will make following a serious accident and injury is to hire an aggressive, experienced lawyer with the resources to help you and fight against those who hurt you.
The days following your accident and injury are critical to your case. The things you do (or fail to do) will have repercussions all the way to the very end of your case. Even the smallest slip-up could significantly impact your ability to recover a fair settlement from Big Insurance. By retaining the services of an attorney, you are more likely to come out on the other side of your car accident with the settlement and medical care that you deserve.
It is extremely important that you do not talk to insurance adjusters or representatives for company drivers yourself. Big Insurance and their corporate clients are not on your side, no matter what the adjuster might tell you. They make their money by denying, delaying, or minimizing the payment of money for claims. Insurance adjusters or company claims representatives are trained to trick you. They will get you to say things that will hurt your case. Do not talk to them until you contact Attorney Sgt. Pike. Our team fights Big Insurance and other bad faith corporate giants every day. We will present the facts of your case with your interests in mind and obtain the maximum amount of compensation for your injuries.