Arizona attorney Marc J. Victor recommends that Arizonans follow the steps below if they get into a traffic accident. Marc Victor’s law firm specializes in criminal law, personal injury, civil litigation, and have helped many Arizonans with marijuana-related law issues.
Do not move the vehicles unless you need to. If you do, take pictures before the vehicles are moved. The placement of the vehicle at impact, including skid marks on the road, can be used as evidence to prove or disprove fault for the collision.
2. Call the Police.
Even if the injuries are not serious. The police will collect a lot of information that will help you recover money for your damages and injuries. Having an officer gather all the evidence and decide whether a traffic violation occurred can go a long way to guard against a dishonest party.
3. Take Photos.
Take pictures of the property damage to your car and their car, and any visible bodily injuries. Pictures say 1000 words. Photos taken immediately after the collision will accurately document how strong the impact was and how badly you were injured.
4. Exchange Basic Information.
With the other driver. This will ensure that the information you get from the police report is correct. Failing to obtain accurate basic information will hinder your ability to collect a recovery.
5. Don’t Admit Fault.
If you are face-to-face with the other driver, don’t admit to anything. You don’t want to admit to something in a state of shock or empathy for the other driver. After a collision your adrenaline is high and making decisions in this state of mind could be detrimental to your claim.
6. Don’t Comment as to your Injury.
Truth is you don’t know if you are injured or not. When adrenaline is running through your body, it is masking your immediate pain and injury. As such, you are unable to correctly evaluate your injuries. In fact some injuries do not manifest themselves for up to 48-72 hours later.
7. Look for any Witnesses.
If there are bystanders, ask if anyone witnessed the collision and get their names and phone numbers. Sometimes witnesses don’t wait for the police to arrive, thus critical information can be lost with the passage of time.
8. Seek Medical Attention.
Even if the injuries are minor, go to an urgent care or hospital so that doctors can start documenting your injury. Insurance companies take the arbitrary stance that “no doctor equals no injuries.” Accordingly, seek medical assistance within a reasonable time after the collision.
9. Speak With a Lawyer Before the Insurance Company.
Insurance companies are very good at twisting your words so that it can be used against you at a later time. You are not under any immediate requirement or deadline to speak with the insurance company. Instead become more informed and contact a lawyer for a free consultation.
10. Contact a Lawyer.
Arizona attorney Marc J Victor offers free consultations. Since there is a no obligation consultation, contacting a lawyer will be the best decision you can make.