The Five Critical Steps You Must Do After A Car Accident


There are many articles discussing the dangers of using a cell phone article while driving. But after a car accident, your smartphone can be a valuable device to record the evidence of your injury.

  1. First Call the Police. They may or may not come, depending on the severity of the injuries, manpower shortages or crime occurring in other parts of your area, but still call them. If they come they will obtain much of the critical information you will need

  2. Photograph the other driver, their car and the others driver’s license plate number. Get the information from the other driver before you leave the scene. Use your cell phone to take photographs of the other driver’s license plate and the other driver. Take a picture of the other driver’s license, insurance information and their phone number. Take a photo of the nearest street signs. If you can write down or photograph the driver’s VIN number. If you’re unable to do this, ask someone else and have them email you the photographs. Take a photo of any witnesses and record what they saw about the accident. You would be amazed at how many times insurance agencies as for proof these independent witnesses were actually at the scene. Of course, If you don’t have a camera on your cell phone get out a pen and write the information down slowly and clearly.

  3. Photograph any cuts, lacerations, and bruising, then seek immediate medical attention. Bruises, lacerations all heal, yet they are indisputable evidence of injury. It takes but a few seconds to turn your smart phone in your own direction and record the evidence. Make sure the camera isn’t so close that the viewer can’t see who you are. If you need medical attention, you must seek it and seek it quickly. The pain of soft tissue injuries, sprains, strains, what’s commonly called “whiplash” tend increase after the accident as the injured area begins to swell and press on nerves. At the scene of an accident, your adrenalin is running at full tilt. Often the real pain doesn’t set in until you’re sitting back in the comfort and safety of your house, after you’ve lain down to nap and then after a few hours, find you can barely get out of bed. The longer you delay seeing a doctor and obtaining treatment for diminish your injuries, the worse your pain will feel and the longer it will last.

  4. Report The Claim To Your Own Insurance Company. Most everyone does this first. They’re more interested in repairing the family vehicle which may be essential to get to work, than taking care of themselves. If you have car insurance, call them and arrange for them to look at your car, or tow it to an auto repair facility. Let them, but be sure to get your insurance carrier to promise to send you photographs of your vehicle’s damage and repair estimates including supplements. Your carrier should also file a critical document with the Department of Motor Vehicles called an SR1P.

  5. Do Not Talk To Anyone Else: After traumatic accident we all want to talk about what’s happened. You may be alone and resting, a bag of ice on your neck, when an insurance adjuster will likely call, and say they’re ‘just interested in seeing how you’re doing,’ or that they ‘want to get your side of the story.’ They will sound warm and friendly and, especially if you’re alone, you may want to talk to someone about what happened. Don’t do it. They are only interested in gathering information to pay less on your claim. Do not trust them. Take their number and tell them you will call them back, after you’ve consulted with an attorney. Don’t be surprised if they tell you that it is entirely unnecessary. Attorneys make it much more difficult for them to pay next to nothing on their claims.

Contact our Walnut Creek car accident attorney to learn more about your case!