Nothing is more upsetting than getting involved in a traffic accident. You are cruising along, going about your business, when all of a sudden, your life is interrupted by a resounding crash. You may go into shock, and you may be severely injured.
Although car accidents are very traumatizing, it is important to handle this situation as calmly as you can and understand the actions that you should take after a collision. Following a few basic steps can help you to get the treatment and the money that you need to recover from your injuries.
What to do at the Scene
When you have an accident, you should pull over to the side of the road and check to see if there are any injuries. You should then call the police and wait for them to arrive.
Be sure to get the names of any witnesses that may have seen the accident, and be sure to take pictures if you can. Ask for a copy of the police report and exchange contact information with any drivers and passengers that were involved in the crash.
You should always see a doctor after you have been involved in an accident, even if you feel just fine. There are some injuries that may not be apparent until weeks after a collision.
According to The Turnbull Law Firm, you should save a copy of every medical bill that you get and ask your doctor to write a report. If you need to take medications, you should save the receipts for any pills that you had to take. You should also ask your employer to provide you with a letter stating how many hours you have missed from work and the wages you have lost as a result.
If you need the assistance of a housekeeper due to your injuries, you should save a record of the payments you have made to the housekeeping service. If you have missed an important life or business event and you have lost money on things such as airplane tickets, you will want to save a receipt for those purchases.
Contacting Your Insurance Company
There are two different Insurance rules in the United States; fault and no-fault. In a fault or tort state, the person who caused the crash is responsible for all of the related bills. In a no-fault state, a person’s own insurance company will pay for their bills no matter who caused the crash.
Florida is a no-fault state. You should report the accident to your own insurance company as soon as possible. They will ask you questions about your accident, and they may ask to tape-record the phone call, but you do not have to let them.
Once you have provided them with all the documentation that you have collected, they will investigate your claim. They will have 90 days to accept or deny the claim. If they accept your claim, they will offer you a settlement. Before you accept their offer, you should talk to an attorney.
Talking to a Lawyer
A personal injury attorney can tell you if the offer the insurance company has made you is fair. If it is not fair, they can negotiate with the insurance company on your behalf and get you a settlement that will be enough to pay your bills. Be sure to find an attorney who has a great reputation with the state bar and years of experience with Florida law.
Having an accident can be very painful. Taking the right steps to get compensation can help you move on with your life.