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What not to do if you are in an accident

Car accidents happen every day. According to the North Carolina Department of Transportation, in 2013 over 226,000 crashes were reported. While there are many different causes for traffic collisions, there are certain things you should never do if you are involved in an accident.

Forget to take pictures

Cellphones make it easier than ever to document any damage done during a collision. Some people rely on police descriptions and witness testimonies, but the best way to be sure your insurance company has an accurate view of what happened is to provide them with photographic evidence. U.S. News also advises drivers to search out any eyewitnesses and obtain their information and testimony.

Leave without calling 911

Sometimes when there are no injuries, parties of an accident agree to exchange information before leaving the scene of a crash. While this might not seem bad, there are several reasons why you should never do this:

  • The other person involved in the crash may not give you correct information.
  • You may each give different accounts to insurance companies about what happened.
  • Some injuries are not apparent immediately but may require medical attention.
  • Officers often need to assign a traffic ticket in the event of a crash, and leaving the scene can lead to additional charges.

Calling an officer to the scene will ensure that everything is handled legally and that a police report is filed.

Offer your opinions

There are always at least two vehicles involved in an accident, and often more than one person is at fault. Only report the facts to police officers and insurance companies. The professionals will work out blame from the details without your opinion, and offering it may result in responsibility being wrongly assigned. Even if you think you are to blame, realize that the other driver is usually partly responsible as well.

Accept an insurance settlement

This is one of the biggest mistakes people make after an accident since insurance companies usually try to get out of as much responsibility as possible. Many experts suggest hiring an attorney immediately after an accident and allowing him or her to handle all dealings with insurance. This can guarantee that you will recover all damages for current injuries and any resulting problems in the future.

Getting into an accident can be scary, but by following the right steps, you can avoid even scarier situations later. Hiring a personal injury attorney can guarantee that you have an experienced professional on your side to fight for you.

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