In minor accidents, with no injuries, you may not need a car accident attorney. However, in situations such as yours, where you ended up in the hospital, you likely have serious injuries and your medical bills are going to be high. In those cases, you almost always need a car accident lawyer.
Insurance companies love it when victims of car wrecks do not have attorneys. The insurance companies know that victims do not typically know their rights and that the companies can typically take advantage of unrepresented victims.
On the other hand, a car accident lawyer knows your rights. The lawyer can advise you about the process, about what you are and are not entitled to recover following a wreck, and what mistakes you might make and how you can maximize the value of your claim.
Personal injury claims are frustrating and confusing for survivors. What you do immediately after the collision directly affects the outcome of any legal claim you file. For example, you do not want to do even tell people involved that you are sorry. While it is polite to do so, insurance companies try to take advantage of your good manners and argue that your apology means you are admitting fault. Anything said right after a crash is fair game for an insurance company adjuster who can then turn it around and use your statements against you.
That’s an example of what not to do. What should you do following a car wreck? If you are seriously injured, your mail goal should be to get the medical care you need. Your well-being is paramount.
If you are able, it is often very important to document what happened. Most of us have cell phones now. Take your phone out and take a quick video walking around your car and around the other driver’s car. Your car wreck attorney can use that video to create still pictures of damage that each of you sustained, and that damage can often tell the story of what happened in the wreck.
You will also need to get information about the other driver. Get the name and address and any other contact information you can get for the other driver. If at all possible, get their insurance information as well. While it is possible for your car accident lawyer to find that information later, it is much easier and cheaper (for you) to get that information at the scene.
If there are witnesses, get the names and contact information for the witnesses. We too often talk to victims of a wreck who said that there were a number of witnesses that saw the wreck, but when we received the police report, those names were not included. It is critical to get names and contact information of those who saw the wreck so that the parties’ stories do not change.
If you are not injured, or not injured badly, it is still vitally important to go see a doctor. This is because some injuries, although they do not hurt at the time, or you are not aware of them at the time of the crash, can manifest days or weeks later. If you do not have a record of seeing a doctor and being examined, you can lose the opportunity to file a compensation claim.
The other insurance company can also make a big deal out of you not going to the doctor and imply that you must not have been hurt or were faking it. To be safe, always go to a doctor after a car accident (unless you are going to the hospital) and get a paper trail that your car accident attorney can use.
Other Car Accident FAQs:
- A big rig hit me, and police are citing the trucker and saying it was his fault. What are my rights?
- After my car accident, the other driver’s insurance company refused to pay my doctor’s bills. Why did they do that? The other driver was cited as being at-fault for the accident.
- Am I required to notify my insurance company of the fact that I was involved in an accident?
- Am I supposed to call the police if I have been involved in a car accident?
- Am I supposed to talk to the police when they arrive on the scene of an accident, or do I have to call an attorney first?
- An insurance adjuster for the other driver called me and wants a recorded statement? Should I go ahead and provide them with one?
- An insurance agent for the at-fault driver called me the other day and wanted to ask a bunch of questions. Is it okay to talk to the agent?
- Are there any other distractions while driving that I should be aware of and avoid?
- Can I file a claim for compensation, after a car crash where investigation showed my vehicle was defective?
- Do I have a case if I was involved in a car accident and was a passenger?
- Do I have to go to court and talk about my accident? I really don’t want to do that.
- Do I have to go to court if I choose to file a personal injury lawsuit after my car accident?
- Do I need to call the other driver’s insurance company and inform them of the accident?
- Do I need to hire a lawyer after a car wreck? And if so, when?
- Do I need to hire an attorney right after the accident, or can I wait until later and I have spoken to the insurance company?
- Do I really need to hire a lawyer? Can’t I just handle the insurance company issues on my own?
- Doctors at the hospital where I was taken after my accident said I needed treatment for my injuries. I not have health insurance or insurance of any kind. What do I do?
- How can I figure out the value of damages after my car accident?
- How do I even know if I have a successful accident claim?
- How do I know if I can file a lawsuit against the other driver involved in my accident?
- How much money can I expect in a settlement offer?
- I cannot pay the medical bills as a result of the accident I was in. What am I supposed to do?
- I felt fine after my car accident and refused medical treatment. Several days later I began experiencing pain in my neck and back. What do I do now?
- I got T-boned in an intersection last week, and landed in the hospital. Do I need a car accident lawyer?
- I have been involved in a collision. Is there anything I can do to protect or preserve the evidence?
- I immediately notified my insurance company about an accident that I was involved in. What else am I supposed to do?
- I need to see a doctor after being involved in an accident. What am I supposed to tell them and what do I need to be aware of?
- I really need to get on with my life after my accident. How long does it take for accident claim to be settled or go to court?
- I rear-ended another car, but my SUV was pushed into the one in front of me by another vehicle. Am I considered to be the at-fault driver in this case?
- I think I was partly to blame for my car accident. How does that affect my case?
- I was a passenger in a car involved in a crash and was injured. Do I have a legal claim?
- I was hit by another driver ramming into my vehicle after hitting a pothole. Who is responsible for an accident like that?
- I was in a bad car accident and the doctor says it’s going to take a long time to heal and I may need surgery. What would my accident claim be worth?
- I was in a bad car accident in Texas about a year and a half ago. Can I still file a lawsuit?
- I was in a car accident and do not know what to do about my vehicle insurance. Do I call my insurance company and the other driver’s insurance company?
- I was in a car accident and got really lucky. There was hardly any damage to the vehicle. However, I did sustain injuries. Does lack of vehicle damage affect any claim I may have?
- I was in a car accident and was not really hurt, but my wife says I should see a doctor anyhow? Do I need to?
- I was in a multi-car accident. Do I have to call all the insurance companies?
- I was in an accident and the other driver left the scene. What do I do?
- I was in an accident that broke my pelvis in several places and need more than one operation to be able to walk again. My husband was the driver and he was at fault for the accident. Can I sue him?
- I was injured in a car accident about a week ago. The other driver’s insurance adjuster called me and asked for my medical records. Should I provide them?
- I was involved in a bad accident that sent several people to the hospital. The crash was my fault. Am I entitled to any compensation?
- I was involved in a bad accident when another vehicle rear-ended me. I’ve been getting phone calls from the other party’s insurance adjuster. What do I tell them?
- I was involved in a car accident and broke my leg and several ribs and need surgery. Do I need an attorney to help me get compensation for my medical bills?
- I was involved in a car accident in Texas and it was partially my fault. Can I still seek compensation?
- I was involved in a car accident last week, but it was not my fault. I was injured and went to hospital. What do I do now?
- I was involved in a collision with another car. Do I need a personal injury attorney to deal with this accident?
- I was involved in a fairly serious car accident. What compensation may I receive from the at-fault driver?
- I was involved in a hit and run accident. What do I do?
- I was involved in a recent car accident. How long does it take to file a claim?
- I was rear-ended and the other driver said it was my fault. How is that possible since he ran into me?
- I was recently involved in a car accident. How long do I have before I can pursue my legal options?
- I was recently involved in a collision with another car. I was not wearing a seat belt. Am I still able to recover damages?
- I was T-boned by a drunk driver. Can I file a lawsuit?
- I was the victim of a driver who fled the scene of the accident. The police have no idea who the individual was. May I claim compensation?
- If I decide to file a lawsuit against the other driver in the car accident I was involved in, how long does it take to get it settled?
- Is there a statute of limitations on when I can file a car accident claim?
- It looks like the damages from my car accident are greater than the insurance coverage of the at-fault driver. What do I do in a situation like that? Can I still collect damages?
- My daughter was in a car accident and the police told her she was responsible for the accident. The insurance company said she was not. What factors deem someone responsible for a car accident?
- My insurance company is offering me a settlement as the result of an accident I was involved in. Should I take it?
- Our family was in a bad accident with a tractor-trailer unit. The cause of the accident is not clear. What do we do?
- The accident I was in was pretty mild and I didn’t really get hurt. However, months later I started having some serious issues with my back. It turned out I had a damaged disc due to the impact. How can I file a lawsuit?
- The accident I was involved in was partially my fault. Am I still able to file a claim?
- The insurance company offered me a settlement after my car accident. Can I accept it?
- The offer the insurance company is presenting to me seems reasonable. Do I need to speak to an attorney?
- The other driver involved in my accident said his insurance company would probably call me. Am I supposed to talk to them?
- The other driver was at-fault for the accident. What happens now?
- The other driver’s insurance agent called me. What do I tell him?
- The police say I was partially at fault for my accident. What does that mean for financial recovery for my injuries?
- What are the main causes of car crashes?
- What do I do after a car accident?
- What is the seat belt law in Texas for adults and children?
- What types of damages would I be able to recover in a car accident?
- What would my accident lawsuit be worth?
- When am I supposed to report my car accident to the insurance company? Or if it’s a minor accident do I need to report it?
- Why do I need a car accident attorney?