After you’ve been in a car accident, you want to make sure you protect yourself from liability, and don’t make things worse than they already are. You can do that by avoiding these 7 common mistakes.
Mistake #7: Posting about the accident on social media
After your accident, the insurance companies involved will be looking for information to avoid paying your claim. Don’t give them the ammunition. Avoid mentioning anything about your accident, injuries, property damage or your condition online, and ask your friends to do the same. Even innocent posts can get you in trouble: if you are claiming a broken leg and post photos of you dancing or hiking, even if they’re several years old, the defense can use them to claim you’re not really injured. Best to just avoid social media altogether until your claim is settled.
Mistake #6: Leaving without speaking to police
No matter what, always speak to the police before leaving the scene of an accident to give them your version of events. This means there is documentation of everything, and a neutral party records it all.
Mistake #5: Declining medical treatment
Even if you think you only have bumps and bruises, have the Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) examine you. You don’t need any other reason except to have your condition documented. But also, your injuries could be worse than they initially seem, and might become worse later.
Mistake #4: Not choosing your own tow company or location
If your car needs to be towed from the accident scene, the police may offer to call a tow truck. It’s important to know that you can and should call your own towing company. Your car insurance company can give you a recommendation and tell you if the towing fees are covered under your policy. If you have AAA roadside assistance, use the towing service covered under that plan.
Whatever you do, don’t allow them to tow your car to a salvage yard, because you’ll have to pay ridiculously high storage fees before you can get it out. You can have the vehicle towed to your home or directly to a mechanic, which can save you additional towing fees.
Mistake #3: Making statements about who was at fault
Like Sgt. Joe Friday used to say, “Just the facts.” When speaking to the police and the other parties, just stick to what, where and when. The why and how, and who was at fault can be sorted out later.
Ask for the names of anyone at the accident scene, and take down their contact information and insurance information. Many people also forget about witnesses, as well. Witness accounts will be crucial if you need to argue a case.
Mistake #1. Not taking pictures of the damage while on scene
It seems obvious, but people often forget to do this. Use your smartphone so they are time stamped and geotagged. Be sure they’re clear, and taken from multiple angles.
If you’ve been hurt in an accident, don’t make these 7 common mistakes that can keep you from collecting the maximum compensation.
Avoid more mistakes by consulting with a TorkLaw attorney to make sure you’re protected and know your rights. Fill out the form below for a free consultation regarding your case, or call us at 888.845.9696.