What Should You Do If You Are Injured In An Accident?
What should you do if you are injured in an accident that is not your fault? Follow these simple steps and tips below. For more information, contact the Law Offices of Christopher L. Jackson so we can discuss the specific details of your case.
At The Scene
Contact the police so they can document the scene and all necessary information in an accident report you will later be able to obtain. Make a note of the police department that responds to the scene so you, or our office, can later obtain it.
Seek Medical Care
If you need immediate medical attention, seek it at the nearest hospital by EMS. It is normal to not feel pain at the accident scene because the rush of adrenaline from the accident has yet to wear off causing you not to register the pain. Many of our clients tell us that a couple hours after the accident, once the adrenaline wears off, the pain becomes unbearable and they then have to go to the emergency department that night or their family doctor the next day. Once you do seek care, tell your doctor what hurts you, even if the pain seems minor at the time, it can worsen within the next week. Don't underestimate your injuries. It is important that you follow your doctor's recommendation for medical care and do not miss any of your medical appointments. The insurance company for the person who hit you will flag and later use against you any delays or significant gaps of time in treatment. Also, take photographs to document the swelling, bruising, stitches, and cuts you received from the accident during every stage of healing.
Dealing With The Insurance Company
The insurance company for the person responsible for causing the accident will contact you about your injuries and request a recorded statement. NEVER give a recorded statement! The insurance company has never used a statement to our client's benefit and will always find a way to use the most innocent of comments or minor detail as a reason for not giving you the full amount of compensation you would otherwise be entitled to. I do advise our clients that they are free to communicate with their own insurance company to settle the property damage; however, I make sure they take photographs of the vehicle's damage before repairs are made or the title is signed over to their insurance company so we can show the insurance company the impact experienced from the accident.
Contact An Attorney
It is important to know the documents the insurance company is asking you to sign to ensure your medical bills will be paid, prescription costs are reimbursed, you receive lost wages for the work you missed, and you are compensated for your pain and suffering because of the accident. Never sign a document unless you are certain what rights you may be giving up! Our office works on a contingency fee basis, which means you do not have to pay us to handle your case. Once you retain us, we immediately contact the insurance company for the person at fault and advise them that all communication is to occur with our office. I tell our clients that if the insurance adjuster does call them, to direct them to our office. Why do I emphasize the importance of ensuring contact with the insurance company only occurs with our office? First, I do not want there to be any miscommunication between the insurance adjuster, my client, and myself. Second, the client is then free from dealing with the insurance company and can focus on getting medical treatment and getting back to their normal daily schedule. Our office will maneuver the process for you so you can focus on a quick recovery and a quick resolution of your case.