You may not feel particularly bad after the accident, but that may be the adrenaline concealing the pain of an injury you are not aware of.
Albuquerque, NM – When you’re involved in a car accident, first comes the shock. Then comes the pain and you start to realize the full horror of what just happened. Such feelings are natural, but you should never allow yourself to be overwhelmed by emotions at such a critical time. Although you won’t be thinking about money at such a time, the outcome of your future personal injury claim may depend on how you react to this new and totally unexpected situation. Keeping a clear mind is essential.
Here are a few things you must do right after the accident, provided, of course, that you do not require emergency medical care.
Get to safety
Get out of the car immediately, especially if you’ve been hit by a truck and there’s a risk of explosion. Get out of traffic. Provide assistance to anyone who may need it and help them get to safety. If someone is severely injured, it is not recommended to move them. Wait for the paramedics.
This is one of the most important things you can do to help your future claim. Photograph the vehicles before they are moved to the side of the road, to capture their position and the damages done to them. When you reach out to an Albuquerque car accident lawyer they may need these photos to determine who was at fault. The photos could also be helpful if there’s a need to bring in an accident reconstruction expert.
Be careful how you interact with the other driver
You may be very angry, which is understandable, but avoid confronting the other driver. Don’t enter into an argument and watch what you say. Do not say anything that may suggest you may have been partly to blame. Michigan uses the pure comparative negligence rule and your damages may be reduced if you are found to be partly to blame.
At the same time, if you smell alcohol on the guy’s breath or you see him hurriedly throwing stuff from his car make sure to tell the police officer investigating the crash. If it turns out the other driver was drunk, your New Mexico accident lawyers can use this to seek punitive damages on top of your compensatory damages.
See a doctor right away
You may not feel particularly bad after the accident, but that may be the adrenaline concealing the pain of an injury you are not aware of. Keep in mind that you won’t be able to seek damages if you don’t have proof you were injured in the crash. Go to the ER as soon as possible. Tell the doctor if you hit your head or your back in the crash. You want everything on paper and some tests, like X-rays or a CT scan.
Talk to a lawyer
If you’re in a minor accident, you can skip this. However, if you were severely injured and you have considerable damages, you will need a tough to negotiate with the insurance company on your behalf. Remember that insurance companies are not charities. They are for-profit businesses and they’re quite good at it. How do they make profit? By using any pretext and loophole they can find to minimize the value of your claim.