10 Car Accident Tips

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Practice Areas: Auto Accident, Trucking Accident, Workers Compensation

Every year, more than six million automobile accidents take place in the United States. About 70% involve only property damage. However, about 30% result in personal injuries and 20% of these result in fatalities. 

Be proactive. Know what to do if you are in an accident.

1. Don't Move
Stay put even it's a small accident. The vehicles involved should not be moved unless they are blocking traffic.

2. Preserve the Incident Location
Limit the damages. Set flares or use car flashers to warn other drivers. Keep a flashlight in your car for such emergencies.

3. Notify the Authorities
Regardless of injuries, contact the police. Insurance companies often expect to receive police reports in order to file damage claims.

4. Create a Truthful Report
Provide pertinent details to the investigating officer but don't guess at any answers. If asked about injuries and you're not certain, just state that.

5. Visuals
Take pictures of any detectable damage or injuries but don't get in the way of the authorities.

6. Exchange information
If police are present, they will record all information and give you a report number. Later, you can secure a report. If police aren't there, you should record names, addresses, phone numbers, and the other driver's insurance details. Locate witnesses and secure their information. Your lawyer will wish to make contact later. Seek out a Los Angeles accident attorney.

7. Inform your insurance company
Contact your insurance company right away. Some insurance companies make that a requirement. Do you have medical benefits ("medpay").If so, use them. After benefits are exhausted, private health insurance kicks in as your primary insurer. (Medpay benefits can be used by passengers too).

8. Check Yourself Out
Are you OK? Some injuries don't show up right away. It often takes a day or two for symptoms to appear. Play it safe and see your family doctor or stop at the local emergency facility. Serious injuries can result from even minor impact accidents.

9. Be organized
Keep all of the following in a safe place: claim number, claim's adjuster's name, phone numbers of all involved, rental car receipt, and any other costs associated with the incident.

10. Contact an attorney 
Perhaps most importantly, contact your lawyer. He or she can make sure that your rights are protected and that valuable evidence is preserved. Though insurance companies generally want to take statements immediately following an accident, it's wise to seek out a Los Angeles accident attorney before making a statement. That way you will be advised about how to secure complete payment for your vehicle and receive the proper medical treatment. Personal injury attorneys are hired on a contingency fee basis so you won't be paying anything unless your lawyer secures a monetary compensation for your injuries.

From the Author: 10 Car Accident Tips

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