Every time you get behind the wheel of a car, there’s a chance that you’re going to have a car accident. No matter how careful a driver you are, how good your tires are, or how carefully you watch the road, car accidents happen.
If you do happen to be in a car accident, then there are a few things you need to do, from checking to make sure you’re okay to contracting a reputable attorney and your insurance company as soon as possible. Being in a crash can be traumatic, and it’s easy to get confused and be unsure of what to do. In this article, you’ll find the most important steps to take following a car accident to help you stay safe and on track at the same time.
Call for help right away.
Any type of car crash must be reported to the proper authorities, whether anyone is injured in the crash or not. Whether it’s a fender-bender auto accident or a more serious crash where someone is injured, 911 should be your first call. The police and an ambulance will be sent to the location where your crash happened as soon as you make the call, so try to stay calm until they get there.
It’s important to get out of the line of traffic, then sit and wait for the medical professionals to arrive. You should never leave the scene of a car accident, as you could be seriously injured and not even know it. On top of that, leaving the scene of a car accident is illegal and can lead to you being arrested, charged, and having to hire an attorney to go to a criminal court instead of an attorney to handle your personal injury claim.
Look yourself over for injuries.
Once you know that the police and paramedics are on the way, take the time to look yourself over for injuries. If you or your passengers have obvious injuries, then it’s better to stay where you are, not moving, until help arrives. It’s important to keep in mind that even if you don’t have obvious injuries, some injuries such as whiplash show up the next day or even days after. If you wait too long to go to the emergency room or to see your doctor, your insurance company might refuse to pay the medical bills you incur because of the crash. It’s best to stay put and let the paramedics take you to the hospital to be cleared, to be on the safe side.
Call a personal injury attorney.
Once the doctors at the emergency room have cleared you to go home, you need to contact a reputable (and local) attorney to see if you have a case—after getting some rest. For example, if you’re in Illinois—say, Cook County—an experienced attorney, such as the accident attorneys in Chicago, can help determine if the auto accident was due to negligence or something else.
A Chicago car accident lawyer can help you get the fair compensation you deserve from the insurance company and will have your best interest at heart. Call a reputable car accident attorney to make an appointment for your free consultation as soon as possible after you’re home.
Check with repair shops for quotes.
Once you have an attorney, you should start calling around and getting quotes from tire shops, auto repair shops, and body shops to determine how much it’s going to cost to get your car repaired. Whether it’s tyres for your SUV, wheels, or accessories needed, let the insurance company know so it can be taken care of.
These are just a few of the most important steps you should take after being in an auto accident. First, though, get well. The rest can come after.