Knowing what you should do if you’ve injured someone else in a car accident can help them get the care they need. Taking the appropriate steps after a crash can also ensure that it’s documented properly, giving involved parties a chance to recover compensation for their pain and financial losses.
At Winston Law Firm, our Davie car accident lawyers are committed to providing drivers in Broward County, West Palm Beach, Miami, and throughout Florida with the information they need to make smart decisions after a collision. Let’s discuss the steps you should take after hurting someone in an auto accident in greater detail.
Don’t Leave the Crash Scene
If you’ve gotten into a car accident, the last thing you want to do is leave the scene right away. Doing so could impact your ability to pursue compensation for vehicle damage and medical bills and may cause involved parties to take legal action against you.
Even if the accident seems minor, you should stick around at the collision scene and take the steps required to ensure compliance with the law. Taking the appropriate steps after injuring someone else in a car accident can help you stay out of legal trouble and ensure that accident victims get the treatment they need to address serious injuries.
While it’s important that you don’t leave the crash scene, you shouldn’t stay in a dangerous area. If the collision occurred on a highway, you can move your car to a nearby location that is out of the way of traffic. Doing so will prevent further accidents and give you a safe area to evaluate your injuries, speak with the other drivers, and contact emergency responders.
Call an Ambulance
After a crash, you should always prioritize the health and safety of those involved. Once you’ve moved your car to a safe location, you’ll want to evaluate yourself and determine if you have any serious injuries. If you are badly hurt, call 911 and wait for the ambulance to come.
If your injuries aren’t too serious, exit your vehicle and check on the other driver(s) involved in the incident. If you find that you injured someone else in a car accident, ask them if they need emergency medical attention. If they do, call emergency responders and wait for them to arrive.
Whether you call an ambulance for yourself, another driver, or all parties involved, you’ll want to give the 911 operator the following pieces of information:
- Your location
- Details about the type of accident you were in
- What caused the accident
- The injuries that you and other parties sustained
- How many drivers, passengers, and pedestrians were injured
- How serious the injuries are and how much pain each injury victim is experiencing
Exchange Information With the Other Drivers
Exchanging contact information with the other driver(s) is an important step to take if you’ve injured someone else in a car accident. Exchanging information will allow each party’s lawyer to file an insurance claim or take further action to recover compensation.
File a Police Report
If you’ve caused a car or motorcycle accident in which someone else was injured, you should file a police report. In most cases, filing a report with local law enforcement after a crash is a legal requirement. That said, there are also other benefits to notifying the police about your accident.
When police officers respond to the crash scene, they’ll conduct an impromptu investigation and file a report that describes the incident. Your attorney can use the traffic crash report later on to defend you against false claims and even pursue compensation for your losses.
Document the Collision Scene
In addition to having the police document the incident, you’ll also want to create your own record of the crash. First, you should take photos of the collision scene, your injuries, the vehicles involved, and any visible vehicle damage.
If you were injured in a car accident, write about the pain, emotional suffering, and other challenges you experienced due to your injuries. An attorney can refer to your written records when calculating how much money you should receive for your intangible losses.
It’s also critical to save your medical bills, vehicle repair bills, and other records that show the financial setbacks you’ve endured due to the incident, including:
- Rental car receipts
- Documents that show travel expenses for doctor’s appointments and other medical visits
- Ambulance transportation and emergency hospital treatment bills
- Vehicle replacement bills
Hire an Experienced Car Accident Attorney
Once you’ve left the scene of the crash and received medical attention to address your injuries, you’ll want to hire a skilled personal injury lawyer. If you’ve injured someone else in a car accident, hiring a lawyer can ensure you aren’t taken advantage of by insurance companies and the other driver’s attorney.
According to Florida’s modified comparative negligence law, you may still recover compensation if you caused the collision. As long as you aren’t more than 50% responsible for the crash, you’ll still be able to seek damages. That said, the amount of compensation you’re able to receive will be reduced in proportion to your percentage of fault.
For example, if you were 10% responsible for the incident and you incurred $100,000 in losses, you’ll be able to recover up to $10,000 in compensation. Hiring a skilled car accident lawyer can drastically improve your chances of receiving a fair settlement.
Schedule a Free Consultation With a Car Accident Lawyer Today
As you now know, there are several steps you should take if you’ve injured someone else in a car accident. Since finding a lawyer you can trust is one of the most important actions you can take after such an incident, you’ll want to be sure the attorney you choose is right for your case.
At Winston Law Firm, we believe hiring our attorneys is the best decision you can make after a crash. Our team has decades of experience and has won over $50 million in case results for individuals like yourself. Contact us today to schedule a free consultation and get the seasoned legal representation you need to move past this unfortunate accident.