In the United States, over 6 million car accidents occur each year. Fortunately, the vast majority of them only result in property damage, such as damage to the vehicle and its occupants. But many of these accidents still result in the injury of a driver or passenger, and other accidents result in death for one or more people involved.
No matter who caused the accident, you need to know your next steps. Being prepared can help you file a claim and protect you if you are incorrectly blamed for the accident. Continue reading to learn more on what to do after a Lakeland car accident and how the lawyers from Lopez & Humphries, PA can help you recover.
Call The Police
If you call the police, stick to the facts of the accident and don’t speculate on what might have happened. Your driver’s license, vehicle registration card, and proof of insurance must all be presented to the police. Even if you believe you are to blame, a thorough police investigation may reveal other factors.
Even if the accident is minor, a police report can help insurance companies and courts determine the truth. Your report is a piece of evidence, and a copy of the report can even be used to support your claim in court.
Exchange Information with Other Parties
The law requires parties involved in an accident to share information with other interested parties. Names, addresses, phone numbers, insurance company names, and motor insurance policy numbers must all be exchanged. You’ll also need to know the make, model, and registration number of each vehicle.
Take a picture of your driver’s license, registration, insurance card, and license plate with your phone as a backup. Determine the relationship between the driver and the vehicle if the driver’s name does not match the name on the registration or insurance card.
It’s important to stay at the scene of the accident. If you leave the scene, you may face harsh penalties for failing to remain at the scene.
Document The Scene
Take verbal and visual notes on the scene of the accident. Take wide shots as well as close-ups of damage and skid marks. If there are serious injuries or deaths, the authorities will conduct a thorough investigation.
Make a mental note of what you remember, such as whether it was bright or dark, whether there were street lights, and so on. Taking a few minutes to scribble down your memories will come in handy. You’ll need it for your driver’s license and insurance claim.
Contact a Lawyer about Protecting Your Rights
The most important thing you can do following an accident is to consult with an attorney. An attorney can assist you in defending your rights and preventing the destruction of critical evidence. In most cases, the insurance company will want to make a statement right after the event. It’s critical to seek legal advice before making such a declaration.
A lawyer can assist you with everything from compensation to medical treatments. Personal injury lawyers are paid on a contingency basis. This means you won’t have to pay any legal fees unless the attorney is successful in recovering compensation for your injuries.
For more information on what to do after a car accident, start with a free consultation. The lawyers at Lopez & Humphries, PA are ready to talk when you call (863) 774-3573 or fill out our following online contact form.