With millions of drivers on the road, it is only a matter of time before you find yourself in a Columbus car accident. While the thought of this prospect is frightening, knowing what to do after the crash has happened can make the situation a lot easier to bear.
What Should I Do First After I Have Been in a Car Accident?
As many as 10 million car crashes happen each year according to the U.S. Census Bureau, but thankfully most of them are minor without anyone getting hurt as a result. If you find yourself in one of these accidents, it is important not to panic.
Take a moment to collect yourself and slowly move your vehicle out of the way of traffic, if possible. Check to see if anyone has been hurt or needs help. If an injury has occurred, call 911 for immediate medical attention.
What Information Do I Need After a Columbus Car Accident?
Now that you are certain that everyone is safe, you need to talk to the other driver and get their contact details and insurance information. This is an important step in a Columbus car accident as you will need this information to file an insurance claim after the crash with your insurance as well as theirs.
If for some reason you don’t have your insurance information with you, there is no need to stress yourself out over this detail. The police will often allow you to bring it to your local police department within 24 hours of the collision for the other driver. It is a state requirement to carry liability insurance, and you could lose your driver’s license if you get in an accident without it.
Should I Call The Police After a Columbus Car Accident?
It is always a good idea to call the police after a car accident occurs to provide a record of the event. If you have had just a minor fender bender, you can still report the crash to your local police department and allow them to determine if they need to arrive on the scene.
If someone has been injured or killed, it is your responsibility to report the Columbus car accident within 30 days to the police or a judicial officer. This is also true of a crash that has caused at least $500 of property damage or if there is an insured motorist involved.
Should I Take Photos After a Columbus Car Accident?
Be sure to take pictures of the damage to your vehicle as well as the other driver’s car after the crash. This will help document what repairs are necessary and is often required by your insurance company as documentation of the collision.
When you are gathering your photos, be sure to snap a shot of the other driver’s license plate for proof they were involved in car accident. You will also want photos of any identifying markers on the roadway that will support the chain of events that occurred in the collision or caused the accident.
Do I Need Witnesses After a Columbus Car Accident?
Being able to obtain witnesses to the events of the Columbus car accident can be favorable to supporting your story. They may have seen the crash from start to finish and can help determine fault. Ask any bystanders if they saw the accident occur. Collect their name and phone number so you can provide this information to the police and follow up with them if necessary to support your car accident claim.
Should I Admit Fault After a Columbus Car Accident?
It is always best to refrain from admitting that you were at fault in any way in an accident, even if you are certain, you caused the accident. Don’t discuss what happened or who is at fault in the crash as this could work against you if a settlement were to be sought. Both your insurance company and the local police will investigate the accident in order to determine who is liable for the accident.
Be friendly to the other driver and refrain from blaming or accepting blame for what happened. Never cause an argument with the other driver and avoid exchanging heated words. If the situation has begun to get heated, wait patiently for police to arrive in your car and allow them to handle the situation.
Should I Contact My Insurance After a Columbus Car Accident?
You will need to report the Columbus car accident to your insurance company by the next day. This is important in getting your claim processed and expediting the repair process. If it is determined by police that the other driver was at fault, you will need to also contact their insurance company.
While it is the responsibility of the other driver to notify their insurance company of the crash, it is still a good idea to follow up with the documentation of the accident, regardless of who is at fault. This can ensure your claim is paid quickly and without issue.
Can I Leave The Scene After the Accident?
Don’t ever leave the scene of a car accident without exchanging information, especially if someone has been hurt. You can be cited for leaving the site of a crash by the police department, creating a serious issue with the law. Never leave an accident scene until the police have cleared you and provide permission to do so.
Should I Take a Settlement After a Columbus Car Accident?
If you are approached by the other driver’s insurance company to take a settlement, you should consider getting the advice of an attorney. You may not know the full extent of your injuries at the time of the settlement and need additional medical care that it doesn’t take into account.
You should be concerned if an insurance company is pressuring you to take a settlement offer and seek out legal advice before you sign on the dotted line. You may be underestimating your injuries and the settlement award that you are entitled to.
Schedule a Consultation with a Skilled Car Accident Attorney
If you have been injured as the result of a car accident, you need the legal advice of the Chester Law Group. Our experienced attorneys can help fight for your rights and get you the compensation you deserve. Contact us today!