Being involved in an automobile accident can be a frightening experience, and some drivers may become panicked and forget to keep their legal rights in mind as they proceed. Here are some things you can do to help ensure your legal rights are protected, regardless of who is found to be at fault.
Remain At The Scene
Unless you are injured and in need of immediate medical assistance, it is important to stay at the scene of the accident. Driving away or walking away can, in some cases, lead to you being charged with leaving the scene. Remain in or near your vehicle and contact the police for assistance. As you wait, take pictures of your car, if possible, and gather your insurance information and vehicle registration. You may also want to contact your insurance agent while you wait for the police to arrive. Write down what you remember happening so you can provide accurate information when the police officer takes your statement and fills out the accident report.
Communicate With The Police Officer
You'll be asked to tell the police officer what happened, and the other driver will be asked to do the same. Listen to the other driver's version of events so you can provide accurate information. If you hear false information being provided, take a note of it, but do not argue with the driver or the police officer. Keep a copy of your notes so you can discuss the details with an attorney at a later date.
Seek Medical Treatment
Even if you don't feel you have been seriously injured, it is a good idea to visit your doctor for an examination after the accident. You may find that you have been injured but don't notice any symptoms until the next day. If you have been injured in any way, you may be able to file a claim to cover the cost of your medical expenses and possibly recover lost income from time lost at work.
Contact A Lawyer
A lawyer can help you to sort out the details of your case, particularly if you feel that the information listed in the police report is not accurate. He or she can also assist you with filing a claim if you have been injured as a result of the accident. Be sure to provide your attorney with any images you took at the scene as well as any notes you wrote down. These may become important should you need to go to court while pursuing a claim after the accident.
If you were found responsible for the accident and you are facing criminal charges, or if you were arrested at the scene of the accident, contact an attorney like Helfand, David PA right away. This will help to ensure you can begin building your defense as quickly as possible.