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Car accidents can happen when you least expect them, and the damage they can leave can be devastating. Not only can your car end up damaged or totaled, but you, along with any passengers, may end up injured. But did you know that there are certain things you should do right after an accident? Take a look at the following tips to help prepare for the unexpected when driving in California.
One of the first things you should do once the shock of the accident wears off enough to think coherently is to dial 911. During the call, request medical assistance and the police, even if you think you and any passengers are uninjured. Oftentimes, adrenaline and shock can mask the pain from injuries, so it’s always best to get checked out by a medical professional following an accident. This examination is also important if you plan to file an insurance claim or lawsuit because accident attorneys and insurance companies may request ER and EMT reports to confirm the extent of injuries.
Following an accident, it is always a good idea to stay put and not move the vehicles involved in the accident, at least not until after the police have arrived and completed their report. This is even more important if you or someone in the vehicle is injured. Staying put allows the police to gather evidence from the accident, such as which direction you were traveling, if there are skid marks on the road, and so much more. If you absolutely have to move your vehicle for safety reasons, try to at least take a few pictures of videos of the crash site. The more video or photographic evidence you can capture of the accident, the better.
If you’re able to do so safely, spend the time waiting for the police and medical team to arrive by gathering and collecting valuable information from everyone involved in the accident. This information includes plate numbers, names, addresses, phone numbers, vehicle registration, proof of insurance, and vehicle identification number (VIN). This information can be written quickly on a piece of paper or captured using your phone camera. Again, this valuable information will be needed if you decide to pursue litigation or file an insurance claim.
Gathering witness testimony and statements following an accident will go a long way in bolstering any auto accident case you want to file. Unfortunately, many witnesses choose to leave the accident site before the police even show up. Because of that, it’s important to gather that valuable information yourself if you’re able to do so safely. Simply jotting down names, phone numbers, and addresses can help your attorney craft a stronger case on your behalf.
Car accidents happen all the time, so it’s a good idea to know what to do if one ever happens to you. If you ever find yourself in the unfortunate position of being in a car accident, remember a few things: call 911, stay put and don’t move your vehicle unless absolutely necessary, jot down information from all the other drivers involved in the accident, and try and gather witness statements. When you remember to do these four things, it will be easier for your attorney to fight for you if you plan to file a lawsuit or claim. If you have questions, contact the experienced San Jose car accident attorneys at Solution Now Law Firm. We can answer any questions you may have about what to do in the event of an auto accident.
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