What to Do After a Car Accident

When a New Jersey car accident occurs, there are several important steps that must be taken at the scene of the crash and soon thereafter. The following outlines a list of steps that should be taken, if possible, following a car accident in New Jersey. If you have been involved in a car accident, feel free to browse the following information and obtain a free case evaluation from a New Jersey car accident lawyer.

Stay on the Scene of the New Jersey Car Crash

The general rule for all New Jersey car crashes is to never leave the scene until instructed by a law enforcement officer to do so. Leaving the scene of an auto accident in New Jersey can result in serious criminal penalties for the “hit and run” driver, particularly if serious injuries were sustained. However, if you are hit in a deserted area, exercise caution while exiting your vehicle.

Attend to Others Involved in the Car Accident

Prior to assessing vehicle damage, ensure that everyone at the scene is not hurt and obtain medical assistance for any injured victims. If a person is unconscious or experiencing back or neck pain, do not move them until a medical team arrives. In some instances, however, you may have no other choice but to move the victim. For instance, if an auto accident victim is complaining of neck pain but is lying in a puddle of gas, move them steadily and slowly while offering support to their back and neck.

Call the Police to the Auto Accident Scene

If the New Jersey auto accident involves serious injuries, extensive property damage or death, call the police. Request that a police report be filed and record the name and badge numbers of the policemen who arrive at the crash scene.

Exchange Information with Others Involved in the Car Crash

Record the names, contact information, licenses numbers, insurance information and plate numbers of the other drivers involved in the car accident. If passengers are present, also obtain their names and contact information. If there are witnesses to the accident, ask them if they ever saw other car accidents occurring in the same place and record their statements. If possible, write down their names and contact information. When speaking to other drivers, witnesses and passengers, remain cordial and cooperative.

It’s important to never apologize for a car accident in New Jersey. For instance, never state that you are sorry for the accident, admit that you weren’t paying attention or confess that you didn’t see a traffic signal or other vehicle. These statements can provide an admission of guilt and may make you liable for the auto accident and any resulting injuries. Immediately following a New Jersey auto accident, it may be unclear who was at fault for the crash. Therefore, until the accident can be assessed away from the emotionally-charged crash scene, refrain from admitting guilt unnecessarily or unintentionally.

Contact a New Jersey Car Accident Lawyer

If you or a loved one has been injured in a car accident, it’s important to speak with a New Jersey auto accident attorney. He or she can instruct you on what to do following your car crash and offer advice to help protect your legal rights under New Jersey car accident law. For instance, many New Jersey car wreck lawyers instruct their clients to refrain from speaking about the auto accident to anyone other than the insurance company and the police.

Furthermore, many auto accident attorneys in New Jersey advise their clients to decline any early settlement offers, as many car accident injuries cannot be fully assessed until weeks or months after the accident. A car accident lawyer in New Jersey can inform you of these and other important steps to take following your auto accident. To contact a New Jersey car accident lawyer today, fill out our free case review form.

Call Your Insurance Company

After the New Jersey auto accident, call your insurance company and inform them of the accident and the extent of your car crash injuries. Lying to your insurance company about a car accident can land you in serious trouble and result in a denied insurance claim. Make sure to gather evidence to support your claim. Obtain a copy of the police report, so you can demonstrate any traffic violations or fault for the accident. Although the insurance company may already be aware of the accident, assuming an active role in your claim will force the company to take you seriously.

Keep a Record of Your Medical Treatment

Keep a record of your doctor visits, medical treatment and referrals to other medical professionals. Retaining a record of your medical expenses can help when filing a claim for medical costs.

Take Pictures and Get an Estimate

Take photographs of your damaged vehicle following your New Jersey car accident. This can assist in determining how much you are owed for your vehicle damage. Next, contact the insurance company and obtain a valuation for the damages. If you are not satisfied with the value assigned to your car, obtain two estimates for the repair of your vehicle or, if a total loss was suffered, obtain a quote for the cost of replacing the car. Tell your insurance adjuster your findings and assert your concerns for your vehicle’s assessed value.

Our New Jersey auto accident attorneys understand the hardships that follow a car accident, as we have handled countless claims from victims who suffered brain injuries and other debilitating conditions as a result of another’s negligence. Although a car accident attorney in New Jersey cannot heal an injury or bring a loved one back, he or she can ensure your rights are protected following your crash and possibly obtain compensation to ensure you remain financially stable. To speak with one of our skilled New Jersey car accident lawyers, fill out our free case review form today.