Injured in a Car Accident? Take These 5 Steps Immediately

Car accidents can be extremely frightening and confusing. Knowing what to do before it actually occurs can help you stay calm, cool, and collected in the event of a car accident. Keeping the following tips in mind can also help your legal case if you choose to bring an injury claim after an auto accident.

  1.    Get medical attention immediately, if necessary.

You should think about the health of yourself, your passengers, and anyone else involved in the accident first. If you think anyone is injured, call for an ambulance immediately. Some injuries are not as apparent as others, such as internal bleeding or head injuries. If anyone seems disoriented, confused, or in pain, play it safe and call for medical help. If possible, do not move anyone that says they have neck or back pain. Follow up with any recommendations given in the ER.

  1.    Call the police.

In Michigan, you are required to call the police after a car accident if there have been any injuries or if there has been over $1,000 in property damage. In most situations, it is better to err on the side of calling the police. That way, you carry out your legal responsibilities after an accident, and you can get a police report, which can serve as a good third-party account of what took place during and after the accident. If someone was uninsured and has to seek benefits through the Michigan Assigned Claims Plan, they may require either ER discharge records or a police report.

  1.    Exchange information with the other driver.

You should share your basic information with the other driver. This includes your name, phone number or other contact information, and insurance information. You should also get the driver’s driver license number and license plate number as well. Be polite to the other driver, but never, never admit fault or apologize for the accident. Statements like these can be used against you in a personal injury case. If possible, avoid talking about the accident at all with the other driver, other than to be sure they are alright and to obtain their information.  You can also take photographs of driver’s license, insurance and license plate information so that you do not have to keep up with paperwork.

  1.    Speak with potential witnesses.

If you notice other people around the scene of the accident, you may want to see if they will talk to you or the police to give a statement. Third party statements like these can be helpful to support your personal injury case. Be sure to ask them for their name and contact information so that you can contact them later as well. Take notes on everything,if you can. You can take notes in your phone if you do not have a pen and paper.

  1.    Preserve evidence.

If possible, take photos of the scene of the accident. The police will often take photos, but it may be helpful to have your own as well. Be sure to take pictures of the damage to both vehicles, if you can. You can also take photos of your injuries and those of any of other passengers.
If you are involved in a serious accident, you may not be able to take all of these steps because of your injuries. Thankfully, the police will usually help with this type of investigative work in those situations. A seasoned car accident lawyer will also be a great resource to help you gather information for your claim. Call Carla D. Aikens, P.C. to get the legal help you need after an accident.

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