Omaha Lawyers Give Steps to Take After a Car Accident
A Law Firm Helping the Injured in Nebraska and Iowa
It's normal to feel confused right after a car accident. Many people aren't quite sure what happened or what to do next.
How do you know what to do when hit by a car?
Whether you are the injured victim of a rear-end accident, head-on collision, hit-and-run, or another type of crash, the car accident attorneys at Ausman Law Firm, P.C., L.L.O., have been helping the injured recover compensation for 15 years. Here are some steps to take immediately after your accident to make sure your injuries are treated and your rights are protected:
Call the police.
Or have someone else make the call, even if your accident seems minor. The police will document your accident, including whether the other driver was under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or was seen driving recklessly by witnesses.
Get medical attention.
You may feel OK after your accident, but you could have a concussion or internal injuries. An emergency medical checkup at the scene of the accident may identify serious injuries before symptoms appear. Then, as soon as you are able, see a doctor for a more thorough examination. They can determine if you are injured and if you are, get you the treatment you need. This visit also provides documentation of your injuries for the insurance company. Be sure to also go to any recommended follow-up medical visits for treatments. This will help demonstrate the extent of your injuries and strengthen your claim for compensation.
Collect contact information.
This includes contact information for other drivers, passengers, pedestrians, and witnesses. Ask for their full name, address, and phone number. For other drivers, be sure to write down the make and model of the vehicle, license plate number, the name of the person the vehicle is registered to, and the name of their insurance company. Don’t talk about the accident or admit any responsibility.
If the other driver says that they do not have insurance, get their information anyway. Even if the driver does not have insurance or they do not have enough coverage, you can still collect compensation for the accident. Most likely, you will file an uninsured motorist (UIM or UM) claim with your insurance provider. UIM is required in Nebraska and can be used in cases of hit and run accidents, too.
If you are able to do so, take photos of the accident scene with your phone. Take photos of vehicle damage, license plate numbers, skid marks, street signs, and traffic signals. Also, take some wider shots of the entire accident scene.
Write down what happened.
As soon as you can, write down your account of how your accident happened. It's important to do this while your memories are still fresh. Write down how your accident happened. Imagine you are telling a friend what happened to you. Or you can make an audio recording of yourself describing the accident using your phone or another recording device. Include everything you remember, including details such as the time of day, weather conditions, and road conditions.
Contact your insurance company.
Tell them you were in a motor vehicle accident. But don't make too many comments or answer any questions. Anything you say at this point could potentially be used as a reason to deny or reduce your claim.
Get your crash report.
Every Nebraska car accident that results in an injury or fatality gets a police investigation and crash report. The document details how the accident happened and is a major factor in determining fault. Here’s how to get a copy of your accident report: Start by locating the law enforcement agency that responded to your crash. Collect the necessary data to make a request, contact the department, and file the proper legal forms. If you have an attorney, they can get your crash report for you.
Contact a car accident lawyer.
Even if your accident seems minor, it's always a good idea to talk to an attorney. Your case may not be as simple as it seems, and you could be eligible to receive more financial compensation than you might think.
If you've been injured in a car accident, our law firm offers a free consultation. We'll go over the details of your accident and explain all your legal options. Contact us today. There's no obligation.