Following a car accident, keeping a level head and following proper protocol can protect a driver from unnecessary arrest and legal complications.
Avoiding Common Mistakes After a Car Crash
By acting responsibly after a car crash, a driver can prevent possible problems with law enforcement and legal issues that may impact an injury claim. Here are some common after-crash mistakes to avoid.
Leaving the Scene of the Accident
According to the law, a driver is required to remain at a car accident scene until the police arrive, regardless of the severity of the accident. Once a driver leaves the scene, he/she can be charged with a hit-and-run accident that carries steep penalties and possible jail time, especially when someone is injured or killed in the crash.
Failing to Call the Police
Getting a police report after a car accident provides vital information relative to the accident scene. Police officers assess the accident and gather evidence that can impact property damages, injuries, and fault for the accident. Not calling the police can put a driver under scrutiny by law enforcement and insurance companies.
Forgetting to Gather Evidence
A driver should gather evidence and information at the scene, even though police gather their own evidence. After a car accident, a driver should collect contact information from other people involved in the accident, as well as witnesses. A driver should also take photos of car damages and his/her injuries that may be required by insurance adjusters when determining fault and damage awards.
Failing to Get Medical Attention
Like a police report, a medical report from a hospital or physician following a car accident is very important to prove injuries and treatment for injuries. If injured in a car accident, failing to seek medical attention immediately after the accident may cause an insurer to claim there were no injuries. Documenting injuries can mean the difference between a fair settlement or a costly lawsuit.
Failing to Take Timely Action
All states have a Statute of Limitations, a time limit, to file a personal injury lawsuit. In Nevada, the Statute of Limitations is two years from the date of the accident. Consulting a car accident lawyer and filing a timely civil lawsuit is essential to recover damages for medical costs, lost wages, and property damages. If a lawsuit is filed after the Statute of Limitations expires, the case is no longer valid in a court of law.