After a Car Accident: A Step-By-Step Guide
If you find yourself involved in a car accident, there are various steps you want to ensure you’re taking to protect your rights, especially if the cause of the crash is negligence. The steps you take can help safeguard your ability to pursue the compensation you need and deserve.
Unfortunately, many people fail to take these actions, and it often results in the inability to recover from the damages sustained. Insurance companies often try to use this oversight against you, and if you don’t take these steps, it gives the insurance provider more of an opportunity to deny your claim.
Whenever you need to pursue compensation, it’s vital to prove liability and show that someone else is responsible for your damages. These steps aid in helping you accomplish this by giving you the evidence and protections necessary to move forward with the process in confidence.
The steps you want to take include the following:
- Exchanging information with the responsible driver
- Reporting the accident to the necessary parties
- Getting evidence including photos and witness statements
- Seeking medical treatment with either paramedics or a doctor
- Hiring a lawyer to protect your rights
Call our firm today at (800) 674-9339 to discuss your potential case with our team.
In Wisconsin, the traditional fault system allows you to pursue compensation from the at-fault driver’s insurance provider. This means you need to have the information of the at-fault driver that helps to start the process of filing your claim. The information you want to exchange include the following from all parties involved:
- Driver’s license and contact information
- License plate and registration
- Insurance company and policy number
Your insurance company may ask you for this information when you report the initial accident. From there, you may receive calls from the at-fault driver’s insurance. In any case, the more information you can provide about the driver you believe to be at-fault, the easier it is to go through the process.
Reporting the Accident
You want to make two phone calls after an accident that can help you start the process. First, you want to report the accident to local authorities, especially if there are injuries or significant damage to the vehicles involved in the accident. Authorities can come out, take statements, and create an accident report which can be used as evidence in your case.
You also want to contact your insurance company to report the accident. Keep in mind, you may want to keep it simple when reporting the accident and avoid saying anything that may damage your claim. Your insurance company, however, can help start the process of filing your claim, working with the other driver’s insurance company to pursue the compensation you need.
Getting Evidence to Strengthen Your Case
At the scene of the accident, it’s important to get certain evidence that can aid in your claim. First, you want to make sure you’re talking to witnesses who may have seen what happened in the crash and can provide additional validity to your claims. When you speak with the witness, make sure you get the following:
- The witness’ contact information
- The statement written down
- The witness’ signature and the date on the statement
For other pieces of evidence, you should be sure to take various photos at the scene that can help your claim. First, take pictures of the actual location where the accident occurred to show signs of negligence such as traffic signals, tire marks, etc. Second, take photos of the damage to all vehicles involved as it can show positioning of the vehicles. Finally, take pictures of all visible injuries you and your passengers may have.
Seeking Medical Attention
Whether you are seen by a paramedic at the scene of the crash, a doctor in the emergency room, or your own primary care provider, getting medical attention is very important. Dealing with an injury, even one with a latency period, is never easy. Getting medical attention allows you to start your treatment quickly.
You also benefit from getting a medical record to help show that your injury was the result of negligence. The initial and ongoing medical care you receive plays a role in the potential outcome you are awarded in a personal injury claim/lawsuit.
Hiring a Lawyer
By hiring a lawyer, you’re able to navigate the process smoothly and avoid having the large insurance company taking advantage of your rights. A lawyer not only helps you meet deadlines, they can also help you file the proper and accurate paperwork necessary to start the process.
When you have a lawyer on your side, the insurance company is less likely to use various tactics that they typically would try to lower your potential settlement. A lawyer uses your evidence and various resources to strengthen your case fully and provide you with valuable insight about what comes next in the process.
At Dunk Law Firm, we work hard to protect you after an accident, and this means ensuring you know what steps to take that position you favorably against large corporations looking to protect their own profits. Our Milwaukee car accident attorneys have significant experience dealing with these matters, and we never back down when your rights matter most.
If you are ever involved in an accident in Memphis or Milwaukee, make sure you’re taking these steps and avoid saying anything that could damage your case. We can take it from there and work to obtain the most favorable outcome on your behalf.
Call us at (800) 674-9339 today to schedule your free consultation and learn more about your rights.