What's the first thing you should do if you have been hurt in a car accident? Do you call your lawyer or your insurer? What's the second thing to do? Your priorities after a car accident injury have far reaching effects on your life. Here is an overview of the important steps you should take, and how to prioritize them:
Avoid or Prevent Further Injuries
The first crash may not be the last and only one if you aren't careful. Therefore, take the necessary steps to prevent and avoid further injuries. If you can move without help, get out of the car and move somewhere safe before even calling for emergency services. If the car can still move, it's also advisable to park it somewhere safe or at the very least get it out of the road.
Get Medical Help
The next step is to call for an ambulance if you or any other person needs it. This should take precedence over everything not only for your health but also to mitigate damages. Delaying medical care may make it difficult for you to recover full damages in case you end up filing a claim or lawsuit related to the accident.
Call the Police and the Insurer
If your injuries are superficial, for example, if you only have a few scratches, then you can afford to wait for the police. Therefore, call the police and wait for them to arrive before leaving the scene of the accident. However, getting medical help takes precedence over waiting for the police, so go to the emergency room or leave with the ambulance if you are seriously hurt.
Waiting for the police is required both by the government and your car insurance company. It confirms to the insurer that you were actually involved in an accident. It will also help the police to generate an accurate report, which may help you with any claim you may make thereafter. Call your car insurance company after getting medical care or first aid and after calling the police. This is also a requirement of car insurance companies.
Seek Legal Assistance
After taking care of all the above, it is time to seek legal assistance; the type of legal assistance you need depends on the seriousness of the accident as well as a preliminary assessment of guilt. For example, if you know you were driving while intoxicated and someone has been hurt, you need help from a criminal defense attorney since it's likely you will be facing a criminal charge soon. In all cases, however, it is best to consult an auto accident lawyer to help you determine if anybody else could have caused the accident and whether they should compensate you.
Contact a law office like Radano & Lide for more information and assistance.