You’ve done it. You’ve just hit something, and now you aren’t sure what to do. In fact, you’re so shaken up that you don’t even know if what happened was considered a wreck. First, just take a breath. You aren’t alone. If you are in this situation and you don’t know where to go or what to do next, we’ve got answers for you. Don’t fret. Just take a breath and take it a step at a time.
What is Considered a Wreck?
First, you should know what constitutes as a wreck. If you collide with a stationary object, animal, pedestrian, or another vehicle, you have had a wreck. You should note that if you are involved in a car accident that results in damages or injury, you could be liable for any of the damages or injuries. If a driver causes an accident by not adhering to the traffic laws set up by the jurisdiction, then the driver who caused the wreck can be held liable for any damages that occur.
Was It Your Fault?
So now you may be wondering if it were your fault or not. Let’s take a look. The one at fault is the one who falls under the four basic levels of fault: negligence, strict liability, recklessness, or intentional misconduct. There is very rarely any question about who was at fault, especially if it involves something like driving under the influence. Typically, state law determines who is at fault and must pay for the damages. For instance, here in Georgia, if you are found partly or even mostly at fault, the modified comparative fault rule in this state says that the damages are either reduced or eliminated.
What Do You Do Now?
If you’re still freaking out, you need to do a few things immediately after your accident, if you can. First, stay put. Don’t leave the scene without exchanging some information because it is a crime to do so. Collect any information from the other parties involved. This includes names, phone numbers, addresses, insurance information, license plate number, and even driver’s license numbers. If there are witnesses, you should get their information as well.
Checking for injuries is another important thing to do. If you are able, make sure that the ones involved are not injured because of the accident. If everyone is safe, you can begin to take photos of the accident. This will be useful for insurance purposes as well. Next, you will need to make an insurance report. This needs to happen as soon as possible to get the insurance companies involved and show you the next steps to take in getting your car repaired or replaced.
Finally, you will need to gather up all the estimates and bills from the accident and repairs. Keeping track of all the expenses involved is ideal for documentation, including medical expenses or property damages. Lastly, if you need to, you should obtain counsel.
Do you need an Auto Accident Attorney?
That’s a scary concept to many, obtaining counsel. However, in some cases, like if a driver is faced with criminal charges, a personal attorney might be necessary. In this case, you would need to seek out a car accident law firm that specializes in accidents of these types. Typically, you would need to hire an accident lawyer whenever there are personal injuries involved or monetary losses with the crash. If you are having issues with the insurance company, this is a great way to ensure that you are taken care of, and your expenses are met. A good rule of thumb for hiring a personal injury attorney is to hire after suffering from several injuries, when being faced with multiple and expensive medical bills, and when you have suffered a significant loss of wages after a crash due to injuries.
There is no need to panic after having a car crash. It happens quite often, in fact. If you or the other party are not injured, you have no reason to hire a personal injury attorney. However, there are some cases where you need one after a crash. If you find yourself needing an attorney, you should seek a car accident law firm that will handle all of your issues surrounding insurance and more while keeping you their priority. Don’t fret over your crash. Just breathe and take it a step at a time.