Each year over 6 million car accidents occur. Many only involve only property damage, meaning damage only to the property, not the drivers or passengers.
One out of three auto accidents do involve personal injury to the driver or passengers and in some cases fatal injuries.
An auto accident happens fast and it is important that if you are involved in one you do not panic and handle things the right way.
At the Virginia Beach Law Office of Scott Barney, we understand that when you’ve been involved in a car accident it can be a disoriented and emotional time.
After you have been involved in a car accident it is important to obtain crucial information.
Below is a checklist of important things to do at the scene of the accident in the Virginia Beach area.
- Stay at the scene of the accident. Never leave the accident scene until the appropriate time. If you hit a parked car or other property, try to find the owner or driver.
- If possible, pull your car over to a safe place and turn on your hazard lights.
- Check on all drivers and passengers for injuries and provide assistance to those injured.
- Call the police. Explain the situation and give the exact location of the accident, so that help can arrive quickly. Be sure to specify if you need an ambulance. Always call the police regardless if there are injuries as many insurance companies will not cover an accident unless there is a police accident report.
- Take immediate notes about the accident including specific damages to all involved vehicles. It is important when talking to the police that you explain what happened. Do not speculate, guess, or misstate any facts. If you are injured or not sure let the police know.
- Exchange information: It is important to obtain the insurance status of the involved drivers. If any drivers were not the registered owners, ask for the registered owner’s name, address, and phone number(s).
- Take pictures of all property damage as soon as possible after the accident. Photos help your attorney and your insurance adjuster determine how much you should be compensated for the damages to your property. If you have visible injuries, you should take a photo of them as well.
- Notify your own insurance company to inform that you’ve been involved in an accident.
- When speaking to any insurance company whether it’s yours or the other driver’s, never give out a recorded statement about the accident until you have sought out legal representation regarding your rights.
- Get the names, telephone numbers for independent eye witnesses that were not involved in the car accident. Eye witnesses are crucial when dealing with conflicting versions of the events.
It’s important to remember you will not get a police report at the scene of the accident. Police reports are not available until 7-10 days after the accident.
Protect your rights by contacting Virginia Beach Accident Attorney Scott Barney.
Perhaps the most important thing you should do after an accident is to consult a top auto accident attorney in the Virginia Beach area.
At the Virginia Beach Law Office of Scott Barney, we will protect your rights and make sure valuable evidence is not destroyed. Often, insurance companies want to take statements immediately after an accident.
It is important that you have received legal advice before providing such a statement. Our auto accident attorney will advise you on issues ranging from how to make sure you are fully compensated for your vehicle to how to make sure you are getting the best medical treatment available.
Personal injury attorneys work on a contingency fee basis, which means there is no legal fee unless we recover compensation for your injuries.