While car accidents are common, most of us have limited experience in what to do after a collision occurs. Unfortunately, the immediate hours and days after are often crucial in collecting evidence, which will play an important role in your car accident claim. At our law firm, we have a team of professionals who will thoroughly investigate your case, but there are some important pieces of information you can gather on your own. Likewise, there is evidence which insurers often attempt to use against you. Being aware of this can help protect your rights to compensation.
Evidence in Support of Your Car Accident Claim
Anytime a car accident occurs, even if it is seemingly minor, your first step should be to notify law enforcement immediately. At the scene, the responding officer will fill out an accident report, which includes important information such as where and when the accident occurred, conditions of both vehicles at the scene, and the names of any drivers involved. This report plays a crucial role in your car accident claim.
You should also get immediate medical attention for any injuries you suffer. Serious injuries can have symptoms that take days to appear, and not getting medical care could endanger your health. It could also jeopardize your ability to get compensation, as medical records and statements from hospitals and treating physicians are important pieces of evidence.
In addition to the above, it is important to do the following after an accident, which can serve as additional evidence in your case:
- Make notes at the accident scene, if possible. Jot down road, traffic, and weather conditions, the appearance of the other driver, and passengers in their vehicle.
- Take pictures with your cell phone. Get photos of your car, your injuries, the other vehicle, and the area around where the accident occurred.
- Get names and contact information for witnesses, in the event they are not included in the police report.
- Make note of stores, gas stations, and traffic lights in the area. All of these may have video monitoring, which your attorney can subpoena for review as evidence in your case.
- Keep receipts for expenses, such as medications and out of pocket costs, and gather pay stubs to show average earnings and lost wages.
Bear in mind that your insurance company will be looking for evidence to disprove your claim. Follow all of your doctor’s instructions regarding follow up care and work or activity restrictions. Avoid making any statements about your accident or the causes, and do not post about it on social media. According to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, social media accounts are one of the first places insurance adjusters look in seeking evidence to dispute your claim.
Contact Us Today for Help
Contact Shapiro, Appleton & Washburn as soon as possible after you suffer injuries in a crash or collision. Our skilled Virginia car accident attorneys provide the professional legal guidance you need to protect your rights in a claim. Our firm has a solid track record of obtaining financial compensation for our clients for medical expenses, loss of income, pain and suffering, emotional anguish, permanent disability, scarring, disfigurement, and more.
It is critical to remember that Virginia has placed a statute of limitation on how long victims have to file a claim for damages against those responsible for their injuries, so do not delay. Failure to file before that legal deadline could mean you lose any chance of ever filing your claim or getting justice against the person responsible for you or your loved one’s injuries.
Contact our office today to request a free and confidential consultation to find out what type of damages you may be entitled to.
- How Much Is My Injury Case Worth?
- Six Steps to Find the Best Virginia Personal Injury Lawyer for Your Case
- The Total Cost of Losses from Car Crashes
An experienced personal injury attorney with dual licensure in Virginia and North Carolina, Eric Washburn received a B.B.A. in Finance from James Madison University—initially worked in the information technology field before obtaining his law degree from Thomas M. Cooley Law School in Lansing, Michigan. Once an Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney in Danville, Va., Eric has been recognized by Super Lawyers Magazine as a “Rising Star” Super Lawyer in Virginia since 2014.