Being in a rear end collision is never a fun situation. If you’re the one that gets hit, you can suffer traumatic injuries that can last a lifetime. That’s why it’s incredibly important to know what to do if you get rear ended so that you can make sure you are ok and move forward with holding the at-fault driver accountable and getting the compensation you deserve for your injuries and the damages you have suffered.
Make Sure You Are Safe
The first and most important thing to do after any accident is to stop and make sure you are safe. You generally don’t want to move away from the scene of the accident, but you should turn on your hazard lights and make sure that you are out of the way of other vehicles so that there is no risk of another collision.
You’ll also want to be very careful immediately after the accident because you may not know the full extent of your injuries. Injuries can sometimes take several days or weeks to manifest including things like whiplash, so try not to do anything to further injure yourself after the accident.
Report the Accident
The next thing to do once you make sure you are safe, is to make sure that you begin the reporting process for the accident. If possible, exchange information with the driver who hit you, contact the police, and contact your insurance company to begin the claims process. You won’t know the full extent of the damage right away, but it’s a good idea to get everything in motion so that you can meet any deadlines to file claims.
You may also want to see if there were any other witnesses you can talk to and gather any possible evidence of the accident. This will help greatly when you get ready to make your case for damages. The more information and proof you have, the more likely you are to be able to get the compensation you need to make you whole again after the accident.
Seek Medical Treatment
There are two purposes for going to the doctor, even if you don’t think you are injured.
The first is so that you can be thoroughly examined in case there are injuries you are unaware of. Like we said, injuries can show up days or weeks after the accident so it’s a good idea to visit your doctor or the ER to get checked out and make sure you are not more severely injured than you think.
Secondly, if you are injured, even a little, it’s important to have those injuries documented so that you have proof for your injury claim. A doctor’s documentation of injuries is one of the most important parts of an accident case and the sooner you go to the doctor to get examined the more proof you’ll have and the stronger your case.
Don’t Talk to People About Your Case
Very quickly after your accident, people may start reaching out to you about your accident, including the at-fault driver’s insurance company. It is important not to speak about your accident yourself.
They may even try to offer you a settlement to make your case go away, but it will most likely be well below what your case is actually worth. Don’t talk to any representatives and certainly don’t take any settlements they offer you.
Contact a Personal Injury Attorney
Once you know that you’re safe and you’ve seen a doctor, you’ll want to contact a personal injury attorney to start building your case. Not only will they represent you and try to get you maximum compensation for your accident, they’ll be the advocate you need when the insurance company and their investigators start trying to contact you and ask questions.
San Bernardino injury attorneys at Hanson & Mouri are there to work on your behalf to make sure you get the money you deserve and to protect you from the opposing legal teams and all of their tricks.
If you follow these steps, you’ll have the best chances of getting the money you need to recover from your accident and return to your normal day to day life.