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What do you do after an auto accident?

On Behalf of | Oct 19, 2020 | Motor Vehicle Accidents

Some car crashes are simply accidents while others occur due to the negligence of one or both drivers. In the immediate aftermath of an accident in Louisiana, hopefully, everyone takes responsibility for taking the right steps.

The first steps to take after a car accident involve safety. Everyone should check for injuries, and it’s essential to call 911 if anyone appears hurt. Those with severe injuries likely need an ambulance to take them to the hospital. With minor injuries, it may be best to call the police to file a report. The report could have value in a lawsuit or insurance claim.

Moving to a safer area is often important. Traffic may continue on the road, which creates hazards even in daylight and pleasant weather.

Once things calm down and everyone is safe, all the parties to the accident should exchange information such as the names of everyone involved, phone numbers, insurance information and witnesses’ names. If possible, it’s helpful take photos of the accident scene and get the responding police officer’s name, contact info and police report number.

Taking steps to file an auto insurance claim involves figuring out what insurance covers the damages. If a driver goes through a red light and hits another car, filing a claim against that person’s liability insurance may be appropriate. With uninsured drivers, the injured party would need to file an uninsured motorist claim with their policy. When someone crashes their car into a stop sign, filing a claim on the collision policy might be appropriate. No matter what claim ends up filed, the insurance company will want documentation regarding the accident.

Other concerns come into play. Paying the deductible and dealing with an insurance company’s adjuster may add stress and confusion. Not everyone understands all the steps and responsibilities involved when filing claims.

Speaking with a personal injury attorney might prove advisable after an accident. The attorney may be able to negotiate on the client’s behalf with the insurance company or even file a lawsuit. In some cases, suing beyond the at-fault driver’s liability coverage limits becomes necessary.