Steps After an Accident
If you've been hurt in Indiana, we can help
A car accident can happen suddenly and unexpectedly. Within seconds, vehicles are damaged and people are hurt. Many people aren't sure what to do next. But the car accident attorneys at Vaughan & Vaughan know that there are steps you can take after a crash to protect your safety and your rights:
Call the police.
Some people feel there is no need for police if an accident seems minor. But you should always call 911 for a car accident, no matter how minor, and you must wait for the police to arrive before leaving the scene (unless you need emergency medical attention).
The police can secure the scene and get medical attention to anyone who needs it. They will also fill out an official accident report that documents what happened. This documentation can later help you prove that you deserve financial compensation. Such reports may contain useful evidence – for example, if the other driver was speeding or was under the influence of alcohol.
However, you need to keep your comments at the scene brief and stick to the facts of what happened. What you say to the police after a car accident can affect your case, so don’t say anything about fault.
Remember, the police report is the result of an initial investigation, not the final word on the accident. Even if the police report says you are at fault, that doesn’t mean you don’t have a case. Contact an attorney who will fight for your rights and your interests in the aftermath of a car crash.
Seek medical attention.
Immediately after an accident, even if you think you feel fine, get medical attention. You could be suffering from internal injuries that are dangerous if not treated right away. A medical exam will also document the injuries you do have for the insurance company. Also go to any follow-up medical visits if they are recommended.
Gather contact information.
If you are able to do so, write down the contact information for other drivers, as well as any witnesses, including passengers and pedestrians. Be sure to get each person's full name, address and phone number. In addition, write down the make, model and license plate number of the other vehicles involved in the accident.
Use your phone to snap some photos of the accident scene. Be sure to get photos of vehicle damage, license plate numbers, any skid marks on the road and any nearby street signs or traffic signals.
Write down your account of the accident.
While your memory about what happened is still fresh, write down what happened. Include all the details you can remember, including any actions taken by the other driver, time of day, weather and road conditions. Or make an audio recording of yourself talking about what happened using your phone.
Call your insurance company.
Notify them that you were involved in an accident. But don't make any additional comments or answer any questions about your crash. Anything you say could potentially be used to deny your accident claim.
Call an experienced car accident lawyer.
Talk to an attorney as soon as possible following your accident. An attorney can advise you of your rights and explain all your options. An attorney can also help you determine the total damages you suffered and help you recover financial compensation.
Our law firm has been helping the injured in Indiana since 1913. We know the impact a car accident can have on you and your family. We know how to build a strong case that helps you get the compensation you need and deserve, whether through a negotiated settlement or a jury verdict.
At Vaughan & Vaughan, it's all about you, the client. We are focused on helping you get the best possible outcome in your case. You can expect compassionate representation as we determine the care you need to recover from your injuries. You can also expect aggressive representation when we deal with insurance companies on your behalf.