What Should I Do Immediately After a Car Accident?
After any type of car accident, there are a variety of steps you should take to protect yourself and to comply with the law. The first step is to get yourself to safety, but you should not leave the scene of the wreck. If anyone else is involved in the crash, and they need help, you should assist them if it is reasonably safe to do so.
If there has been any property damage, you must exchange driver licenses, registration and insurance information with all other drivers. If the damage is serious, you must also file an official report with police.
If anyone has been hurt or killed in the accident, or if a parked car was damaged without the owner present, you must contact the police. Failure to do so could result in criminal hit-and-run charges being filed against you. Finally, depending on your auto insurance policy, you will likely be required to notify your insurer of the crash.
In addition to these legal requirements, however, there are measures you can take to protect yourself. If possible, take photos of the scene, including any damage, skid marks, signs or signals involved. Take down the names and contact information of any witnesses who are willing to speak to you, and ask them if they would be willing to file a statement about what happened. These steps can help you if you decide to pursue litigation later.
And even if you feel fine, you should get checked out by a doctor. This will help provide documentation about any latent injuries and can also prevent certain conditions from developing and becoming life-threatening.
The experienced and knowledgeable auto accident attorneys at Jakubowski, Robertson, Maffei, Goldsmith & Tartaglia help victims pursue compensation after auto wrecks throughout Nassau and Suffolk counties.