Car wrecks on Highway 501 or the 17 bypass can cause traffic jams that last for hours, leading to frayed tempers and sometimes additional auto accidents. When an accident happens, dealing with the aftermath can be confusing and traumatic.
Your personal injury attorney at Coastal Law, LLC, is here to guide you through the process of getting compensation for your injuries and holding the negligent driver accountable, but what should you do before you call the attorney?
I’ve Been in a Car Wreck – What Should I Do Now?
Immediately after the auto accident, contact the highway patrol. If anyone is injured, call 911 and get emergency help. If it is possible, have someone take photographs of the scene, the vehicles, and any injuries that you or others experienced. Take down contact information for any witnesses.
Cooperate with the police, and ensure that they have accurate facts to put into their report.
Get medical attention immediately for any injuries that you have suffered. Get checked out even if you do not immediately feel pain. Some injuries, such as soft-tissue injuries in the neck or back, may not hurt at first. If you ignore them, they can worsen over time and lead to further complications.
Do not make any statements to any insurance companies. Notify your insurance company that the accident happened, but refer any questions or requests for a statement to your personal injury lawyer.
Do not sign anything from the insurance company or their attorneys before you have consulted with your attorney.
Consult with your personal injury lawyer as soon as possible. Bring all photographs, witness information, and documents that relate to your case.
How Do I Get Paid for My Injuries?
Once we have investigated your case and you have finished all necessary treatment for your injuries, we will usually send a demand letter to the at-fault driver’s insurance company. They might pay it. They might negotiate, or they might refuse to pay.
When they refuse to pay, we will draft and file the lawsuit which asks the court to make them pay. Once the lawsuit has been filed, the case can still be settled at any time. In the meantime, we get any evidence from the other side that is relevant to your claims and we do an independent investigation of the accident. Critical witnesses may be required to give depositions. Both sides may be required by the court to participate in mandatory mediation proceedings where they attempt to settle the case before trial.
In some cases, the defense will not pay or they will not pay what we believe you are entitled to. Then we will try your case to a jury of your peers.
What’s the First Step for Me?
The aftermath of an auto accident can be extremely stressful and confusing. At every step of the claims process, you need to have your personal injury lawyer at your side.
The first step any person should take after an auto accident where the other driver was at fault is to contact an auto accident attorney who can guide you through the rest of the process. You can schedule a free consultation to discuss the facts of your case by calling (843) 488-5000 or filling out our online form.