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What to Do After a Car Wreck


Experiencing a car wreck can be traumatic and overwhelming, leaving you uncertain about the next steps. Ensuring your safety and protecting your legal rights are paramount. This comprehensive guide outlines the crucial actions you should generally take following a car crash accident, helping you navigate the aftermath with confidence.

1. Check for Injuries and Ensure Safety

Immediately after a car wreck, assess yourself and any passengers for injuries. If anyone is hurt, call 911 right away. Even if the injuries seem minor, it’s important to seek medical attention, as some symptoms may not appear immediately.

If the vehicles involved are causing a hazard in the middle of the road and it’s safe to do so, move them to the side to prevent further accidents. Turn on your hazard lights to alert other drivers.

2. Call the Police

Regardless of the wreck’s severity, it’s essential to report the incident to the police. A police report provides an official account of the accident, which is invaluable when filing an insurance claim or if legal action is necessary. When the officers arrive, give them a factual account of what happened, but avoid admitting fault or blaming others at the scene.

3. Document the Scene

Gather as much information as possible from the accident scene. Use your smartphone to take photos of the vehicles, as well as any visible damages, license plates, road conditions, traffic signs, and skid marks. This visual evidence can be crucial for insurance claims and legal proceedings.

Exchange information with the other driver, including names, contact details, insurance information, and vehicle registration numbers. If there are witnesses, get their contact information as well; their accounts could support your version of the events.

4. Seek Medical Attention

Even if you feel fine, it’s wise to see a doctor after a car crash accident. Some injuries, like whiplash or concussions, might not present immediate symptoms. A thorough medical examination will ensure that any hidden injuries are treated and documented, which is important for insurance claims and potential legal action.

5. Consult with a Car Accident Attorney

Before speaking with any insurance adjusters, it’s wise to consult with a car accident attorney. Legal guidance at this early stage can be crucial in navigating the complex aftermath of a car wreck. An attorney can advise you on communicating with insurance adjusters and ensure that your rights are protected throughout the claim process.

Your attorney can help manage communication with insurance companies, ensuring that you provide necessary information without jeopardizing your claim. An experienced attorney can also handle negotiations with insurance companies, aiming for a fair settlement that covers your damages and injuries.

An attorney can help in several ways, including:

  • Evaluating your case and advising on the best course of action.
  • Handling negotiations with insurance companies.
  • Representing you in court, if necessary.

Choosing a lawyer experienced in car accident cases ensures you have an experienced advocate on your side.

6. Follow Up on Medical Treatment

If you sustained injuries, follow your doctor’s treatment plan closely. This not only aids in your recovery but also provides a documented trail of your injuries and treatment, which is important if you need to prove the extent of your injuries later.

Speak With a St. Louis Car Wreck Lawyer 24/7

The moments following a car wreck can be chaotic and confusing. By following these essential steps, you can ensure your safety, protect your legal rights, and set the groundwork for a fair resolution to any claims or disputes that may arise. Remember, the key is to stay calm, act responsibly, and seek professional guidance when necessary.

If you or someone you know has been involved in a car crash accident, it’s important to understand your rights and options. Consulting with a knowledgeable car accident attorney can provide peace of mind and ensure that your rights are fully protected.

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Updated: March 13, 2024