Even a minor car accident has the potential to result in a serious injury. Furthermore, it can cost you quite a bit of time and money, especially if you don’t know which steps to take.
One of the most important things you can do following a car accident is begin the documentation process. Don’t assume that you’ll have time in the future to collect everything you need. Not only can this complicate things regarding your insurance claim, but it does the same if you want to file a lawsuit in an attempt to collect compensation from the negligent driver.
Here are the types of steps you can take to document a car accident:
- Call 911: The important thing here is for police to quickly respond to the scene. They can then review what went wrong and file a report, which is information you can use to your advantage in the future.
- Take photos and videos: If possible, use your smartphone to take photos and videos of the car accident scene. Visual documentation can work in your favor as you build your case. When documenting the scene, focus on damage to your vehicle, injuries and the positioning of the scene.
- Gather insurance information: You don’t need to have a personal conversation with the other party. Instead, quickly exchange insurance information and move on from there. This is also a good time to speak with any witnesses, while collecting their contact details.
- Report the accident: Once you receive treatment, report the accident to your car insurance company. You can typically do this online or over the phone, so use whatever option is easiest for you.
- Maintain medical records: If you were injured in the accident, you’re sure to collect one medical record and bill after the next. Every piece of paper you receive is one you should hang onto.
Although it’s important to document a car accident, don’t let this get in the way of receiving immediate medical attention. Your health is your primary concern, so don’t ignore your injuries just to take photos or exchange information.
As you recover, you can review the accident, consult with your insurance company and learn more about your legal rights. If you have questions about motor vehicle accidents, your rights and the next steps to take, visit our website for additional guidance.