No matter how cautious you are while driving, there will always be some reckless driver who can crash into your car and put you in a situation that you didn’t ask for. If your car received only minor scratches and dents, you can thank your lucky stars for making it out unharmed. But if you weren’t as lucky and you ended up getting injured, you might be wondering how you can hold the driver who hit your car accountable for what he or she did. Here are some things that you can do under the law if you’ve gotten involved in a car accident:
Stay at the Scene of the Car Accident
Once you get yourself caught in a car accident, your initial reaction might be to get out of there as fast as you can, especially if it wasn’t even your fault at all that it happened. But instead of running away from the car accident that you got involved in, you should either remain where you are or move to a nearby area that’s safe. Failure to do so could get you a misdemeanor charge even if you were the victim of the said incident.
You should also turn your car’s hazard lights on to let other drivers passing by along the crash site itself that there is a situation.
Call 911 Immediately
Dial the nation-wide emergency number to summon both emergency medical services and police to the site of the car accident. Dialing 911 (in the U.S.) can be your saving grace when you’ve gotten yourself involved in a car accident, especially as your life may be on the line if no one responds to your cries for help.
As there’s sometimes no telling at all how severe the injuries that you sustained after getting involved in a car accident are, you should call emergency medical services to get you out of the crash itself and take you to a hospital for proper medical treatment.
You’ll also want to get the police to respond to the car accident that you got yourself caught in so that they can officially document the events that led to the said incident and divert incoming vehicular traffic away from the crash site.
File a Personal Injury Claim with the Other Driver’s Auto Insurance Provider
After you’ve gathered the auto insurance information of the driver who hit your car, thanks to the police, you should call their insurance provider to inform them you’ll be making a personal injury claim against them.
You have to gather as much documentation as you can like pictures of the car accident itself, the accident report from the officer or officers who responded to the crash site, etc. The insurance company will want to see all of this.
Only after the reckless driver’s insurance provider has concluded that the personal injury claim that you filed against them is justified can you get compensated for the injuries, damages, and lost wages resulting from the car accident caused by their client’s negligent driving.
If the Driver Who Hit Your Car Won’t Settle out of Court, File a Lawsuit
Most car accident claims usually get settled out of court either through mediation or arbitration. However, if the driver who hit your car is rather keen to defend himself from your claim and would like to fight you tooth and nail in a more open setting, you can lodge a formal complaint against them in court.
Filing a lawsuit is bound by a fixed time frame though. If you want to know whether you’re still within the time limit wherein you’re allowed to file a lawsuit, or if you’ve already gone past it, you should check your state’s statute of limitations.
However, the driver who hit your car can also defend himself against the lawsuit that you filed against him because of the concept of “due process of law.” Thus, you should get yourself a lawyer like the one here who can help you win your case and hold the reckless driver responsible for causing the car accident in the first place.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, more than one million car accidents occur each year that either injure or kill both drivers and passengers. You may not have been a part of that statistic before, but after becoming involved in a car accident you’ve become one of those numbers. Perhaps your accident left you significantly injured to the point that you can’t go back to work until your doctor has given you clearance to do so. You will want to take note of the above-listed things that you can do under the law so you can get justly compensated for the pain and suffering it caused.
Adeline Robinson is one of most promising young law writers. She writes pieces on law topics for common readers. She is an avid sports fan and loves watching games if she has free time.