If you’ve been involved in an accident that was caused by someone else’s negligence, then it’s important that you seek compensation. If the accident is particularly severe, you might want to consider phoning the police and reporting the person responsible. It’s crucial to the success of your case [and your health] that you take the right steps after an accident takes place. The right steps include calling an ambulance, documenting evidence, and contacting an attorney.
In this article, you will find several useful tips on what to do after an accident caused by someone else’s negligence:
Phone an Ambulance
The first thing that you need to do after an accident takes place, is to phone an ambulance. This is for yourself and for anybody else involved in the accident. Unless your car’s smoking or upside down, most health experts recommend that you stay inside it until medical help arrives. This is because some internal injuries are not immediately apparent, but if you move you can make them worse. The same can be said for whiplash, which doesn’t usually manifest symptoms immediately and instead takes several days.
Check Your Surroundings
You also need to check your surroundings. If an accident has been caused intentionally, then you could be in danger. If the person responsible for causing the accident is behaving unpredictably, and you’re not seriously injured, then you should get as far away from them as possible. If you stick around, then there’s a chance that the person could go on to cause you further injuries. Make sure that you pay attention and check your surroundings.
Phone the Police
If you’re not confident that the person responsible for your accident is in control or if you think that they caused the accident intentionally, then you should phone the police. It’s important that you try to call them as discreetly as possible because if the party responsible realizes that you’ve phoned the police, they may become angry or might try to flee. You can usually call for the police at the same time that you phone for an ambulance.
It might be difficult at the time, but if you can, then try to preserve as much evidence as you can. This could include a photograph or video of the person responsible, as well as their license plate, and their name and contact information. You might also want to take the names and contact information of anybody who witnessed the accident take place. Evidence will make your case stronger, if it goes to court, or if you make a claim for compensation. It will also reduce the amount of work that your lawyer has to do after you contact them.
Contact a Lawyer
Once the dust has settled, and you’re back at home, you should contact a lawyer. There are lots of legal components to a compensation case that you should read more about before you contact an attorney [including subrogation]. By taking the time to inform yourself, you will be able to present your case in a clearer manner to the attorney of your choosing. When you’re selecting an attorney, make sure you select one that’s experienced and well regarded in your local community. If you’re on a budget, you might also be able to get a lawyer on a no-win-no-fee basis.
Take Time Off
After an accident, you need to relax. Serious accidents can be devastating for both your physical and mental health. If you don’t take time off of work, you can burn yourself out and cause a lot of mental stress. Your employer should be fine with you taking some time out. Depending on your employer’s sick leave policies, you might also qualify for sick pay. If you don’t, then you should be able to apply for some kind of disability benefit, to help you finance your recovery. You don’t need to be worrying about work when you’re recovering from an injury.
Don’t Contact Them
If you know the person responsible for the accident, don’t contact them or speak to them until the case is finished. Contacting the person yourself can affect your case’s outcome. You should let your lawyer speak for you. If you need to get a message across to the person responsible, ask your lawyer to pass it along. If they don’t think it’s important, then they will advise you against this. Always listen to your lawyer’s advice and follow any instructions that they give you about your case.
If you’ve been involved in an accident, then it’s important that you follow the steps we’ve outlined in this article. By following them, you’ll be more likely to preserve your own health and get compensation.