Each year, there are almost 6 million car accidents in this country, and the odds are that you will be involved in a crash by the time you are 34. According to this data, there is a good chance that you will find yourself at the scene of a car crash. Taking these precautions after motor vehicle accidents is important and can help preserve your legal rights.
It is illegal to leave the accident scene in Pennsylvania if there was a fatality, anyone was injured, or you cannot drive a vehicle safely because of its damage. Written reports of minor accidents must be submitted to the Department of Transportation within five days.
You should also assist anyone who is injured and call 9-1-1 for serious injuries.
The accident scene is the place, unless you are seriously injured, to exchange relevant information with other motorists such as insurance information, license plate, driver’s license and contact information. Take the time to use your phone to photograph or film the accident scene, all the vehicles involved in the crash, damaged property and weather conditions. Obtain the identity of any witnesses.
Never lie, admit fault or apologize. Do not negotiate or accept any settlement at the scene.
Take injuries seriously
Seek medical attention as soon as possible even if you believe you are uninjured. Some injuries may not appear for hours or days after the crash and may become more serious over time. Keep any information concerning medical costs in case you seek reimbursement.
Posting on social media
Social media has a far reach and can be a source of information for insurance companies and other parties in a lawsuit. Anything posted on social media about your accidents, your injuries and even your physical activities may be used against you in a civil lawsuit.
Never assume that anything posted will remain confidential even if you try to restrict access. The best precaution is not posting anything about the accident and your condition.
Other insurance companies
If the other motorist’s insurance company contacts you, provide only basic information such as your name and contact information. Never admit fault, sign any documents, or agree to a settlement without consulting an attorney.
Attorneys can assist you with dealing with insurance companies and other parties in the accident. They can help you pursue your right to compensation for injuries in a lawsuit or negotiations.