You took to the streets expecting a peaceful drive, yet you were caught off guard when another driver crashed into your vehicle. Now left with nothing but shock and confusion, you’re probably asking yourself: “I was in an accident that wasn’t my fault – what now?” It’s understandable to feel overwhelmed, even if you consider yourself a great defensive driver, these things can still happen out of nowhere.
Put an end to the legal confusion surrounding car accidents with this helpful guide that outlines exactly what steps should be taken after an unfortunate collision occurs.
Have You Been In A Car Accident That Was Not Your Fault? Learn What To Do Next
In the event of an accident, it is critical that you take proactive steps to protect your rights. This becomes even more imperative if the other driver attempts to make false statements or fails to report the incident. Taking swift action in these circumstances will help ensure that your best interests are protected at all times.
It’s essential to keep a level head in the event of an accident. Make sure everyone is safe and unharmed. Although you may not be feeling any pain at first glance, seek medical attention from paramedics as soon as possible – it could save your life!
To prevent additional collisions or congestion, be sure to move all vehicles off the road if possible.
2. Gather As Much Evidence And Documentation As Possible
Evidence is essential in proving who was at fault for an accident, particularly if the other driver doesn’t report it to their insurance company. Start collecting information from the scene of the incident right away; this will help you demonstrate what transpired during and after a crash.
You will need to gather important things such as:
- Exchanging insurance and contact information with the other driver
- Gathering witness contact information and testimonies
- Taking pictures of the accident scene and vehicles involved in the crash
3. Avoid Discussing Or Admitting To Guilt
An auto accident can leave you feeling rattled, overwhelmed, and uncertain of your next steps. Though the impulse to take responsibility may arise in conversation with other parties involved (e.g., the other driver, police officer, insurance companies), it’s best not to concede fault while emotions are running high.
Hiring a car accident lawyer is an excellent way to ensure that you get the compensation you deserve. However, if you accept responsibility for the crash, it can drastically reduce your chances of obtaining financial compensation for any harm incurred either to yourself or your vehicle. In addition, it may even put you at risk of being taken to court by the other driver involved in the incident.
You should never admit guilt following a car accident, as you aren’t obligated to do by law. An admission of fault can make it more challenging for your legal representative to support you in securing the rightful compensation. What’s more, any statement that you give to the police could be used against you; thus making it easier for an insurance company to deny your claim.
4. Always Call Local Police
Even if you’ve collected evidence of the accident it is important to always contact the police to file a report. Not only can a filed report lend more credibility should any details become disputed later on, but it could also act as an advantage when attempting to negotiate a settlement. Don’t take your chances – make sure that law enforcement is aware of what has happened and be certain that you have enough proof for yourself.
5. Document The Entire Incident In Writing
As soon as you are back home, take some time to document the accident in writing. Writing down what happened shortly after it occurs will help ensure that no crucial details slip away and provide an advantage when attempting to negotiate with the at-fault driver’s insurance company for a favorable outcome.
Things To Consider After A Car Accident
Always Seek Medical Attention
Even if you don’t notice any injuries from a car accident, it is imperative to visit the doctor for a thorough examination. Prompt medical attention can be lifesaving and also assist in your personal injury claim against the at-fault driver’s insurance company. Visible or hidden wounds may not always surface straight away after experiencing an automobile collision which is why it is important to always seek medical attention for a complete evaluation. Documenting personal injuries is extremely important and helpful to your case to get the compensation you deserve.
How Does Car Insurance Work When A Car Accident Wasn’t Your Fault?
The process of dealing with your own insurance company after a car accident can be an unwelcome source of stress, and the idea of having to contact the at-fault driver’s insurer may add even more strain. Thankfully, you don’t have to face this task alone; instead, an experienced Sarasota car accident attorney can lend their expertise in negotiating with these companies on your behalf.
While there are things you can do on your end to gather evidence and documentation following a car accident, it is highly recommended that you seek a qualified Sarasota car accident law firm that can guide you through the entire process. Legal counsel can provide insight into your rights following an automobile collision and help ensure that you receive equitable recompense. In addition, they are invaluable in guiding victims through this stressful process with ease and clarity.
An experienced attorney will fight hard to make sure you receive the compensation that you need and deserve after an accident caused by someone else. They understand what it takes to ensure the insurance company or at-fault party provides everything necessary for a successful recovery.
Does A Police Report Play A Role In Determining Fault?
In the event of a car accident, regardless if it is minor or severe, call 911 immediately. This way you can ensure that law enforcement will be present and document their findings accurately which in turn can accelerate your insurance claim process. Having an official police report is invaluable as it becomes part of the record for everyone involved.
To fortify your claim, you must stay in the scene until the police arrive. This is especially critical if it wasn’t your fault in causing the car accident. In Florida, a comparative state law applies; this implies that both insurance companies will cooperate to decide each driver’s level of accountability.
Furthermore, when it comes to determining fault in an auto accident, insurance companies have their own way of making that decision. While the police report is often a factor they consider, this does not mean the law mandates them to accept its findings. If you disagree with your insurer’s conclusion about who was at fault for the collision an attorney can help put together a compelling defense on your behalf.
Contact An Experienced And Highly Qualified Sarasota Car Accident Law Firm
It is crucial to be mindful that in the Sunshine State, you must make your car accident claim within four years of the incident. It takes a certain amount of time for constructing an effective case and even more so when one needs to recover from their injuries.
When you are facing the uncertainty of what to do after an unexpected car accident that was not your fault, having a car accident attorney by your side can provide invaluable support and peace of mind. Reach out now to an experienced lawyer who has the knowledge and resources needed to help you get back on track as soon as possible.
Do not wait to take action, contact Christine Law today to get your free consultation. We understand that this type of situation can be overwhelming, which is why we are devoted to being by your side throughout the entire process and helping ease some of the burden associated with dealing with its aftermath. Call (941) 548-9555 now so our team can fight on your behalf.