What should you do if you have been hurt in a car accident? Every year there are six million car accidents in the United States that injure three million people. If you have been hurt in a car accident, or just want to think ahead about what to do if you’re ever involved in one, read on for important tips:
- Contact a car accident attorney before you talk to anyone else. Of course, you need to speak to the police and certainly to medical personnel and first responders, especially if you have been badly injured! But do not talk to an insurance company or to the other party in the accident until you’ve spoken to your lawyer. If you have been hurt in a car accident, the other side will almost certainly want to get a recorded statement from you by telephone or in person. They may be doing this hoping that you are off-balance because of the accident, and hope you will say something that will let them deny fault or at least decrease the amount of money they have to pay. At worst, they may even try to get you to sign a release to give them medical information or details about your employer. A personal injury lawyer can help you know to whom you should talk and when.
- Deal with the medical bills as soon as possible. Unfortunately, a lot of people who have been hurt in a car accident assume that their medical bills will be automatically paid by the other party or their insurance if that person admitted the accident was their fault, or if the police declared them to be at fault. In reality, it can be much more difficult to get payment. The other person’s insurance company will not be interested in paying anything until long after they have completely satisfied themselves that the fault lies with their client.
In an emergency, of course, you will need to get medical attention immediately. If the situation is not an immediate emergency, however, the wise thing to do is to contact your personal injury attorney and give them all the details of all of your own insurance and everything you know about the other person and their insurance policy.
- Keep track of your losses. You may be entitled to more compensation then simply the payment of your medical bills. If you lose wages because you miss time at work, if you have been disfigured or have lost the ability to work, or even if you have suffered so drastically as to have lost much of life’s enjoyment, the law provides for you to be compensated. A car accident attorney can give you all the details on what you’re entitled to and how much you should be asking for.
If you have been hurt in a car accident, the first thing you need to do is get medical help. Never delay your medical needs in order to get legal advice. Once you have taking care of your medical needs however, don’t hesitate to get the legal help you need.