Most people involved in car accidents leave their homes or places of business with plans in their heads for what they will do over the next few hours. Perhaps they have a project at work, a date in the evening or a quiet night of helping the kids with homework. Suddenly, they must set their plans aside and deal with the aftermath of a crash, perhaps including recovering from injuries.
No one adds "car accident" to their to-do list, but you may be able to take some steps so you are prepared if you should ever have the misfortune of being a victim of an accident on the road. Knowing what to do and having a plan in place may save you trouble and frustration in the days and weeks that follow as you get your life back on track.
Just in case
Before you drive anywhere, there are things you can do to expedite the process of cleaning up the mess of an accident. The first is to read and understand your insurance policy. Know what your policy covers, if there are any exemptions and whether you have adequate coverage if you should ever suffer serious injuries in a crash. You may even want to up your coverage after reading your policy.
Next, having a copy of your insurance in your vehicle is a smart idea, but you may also want to download an e-copy to your phone. If your insurer has an app, adding that to your phone can allow you to contact your insurer quickly after the accident.
What to do first
After an accident, you may feel nervous and excited, and that may cause you to say things you should not say. It is critical to avoid saying you are sorry or taking the blame for the accident even if you believe it was your fault. Allow the investigators to assign fault, and do not let the other driver pressure you into an apology. Instead, take these important steps:
- Call for medical assistance so there is a record of any injuries.
- Contact police and remain calm until they arrive.
- Take pictures of the scene and notes of the events of the accident.
Remaining calm and cooperating with authorities and medical personnel will go a long way during the process of sorting out fault. Finally, you will find an ally in a Missouri attorney who can assist you with your insurance claim as well as any civil claims that may arise after the accident.