Were you the victim of a car crash? The important thing is that you are alive and, hopefully, well. If you did not cause the accident, an Indiana car accident lawyer can help you recover all your losses. Be careful, though, as your actions following the accident play an important role in the recovery process.
What should you do and when should you do it? Check out our accident aftermath to-do list below:
Indiana Car Accident Lawyers’ To-Do List for Crash Victims
Stop at the Crash Scene and Comply with Your Legal Obligations
These obligations are subject to Indiana code section § 9-26-1-1.1. It foresees that motor vehicle operators who are involved in car accidents should act as follows:
- Stop at the accident scene or as close to it as possible
- Take measures to avoid impeding traffic more than necessary
- Provide their contact data and vehicle registration number to the other parties involved
- Show their driving licence to everyone else involved or attending the vehicles involved
- Assist the injured and/or request medical assistance for them
- Report the accident or make sure someone else does
The duty or reporting accidents refers to events involving property of minimum $1,000 and/or injuries. Crashes occurring within municipalities should be reported to the local police department. Those occurring outside municipalities require reporting to the nearest state police department. Calling 911 is the easiest and quickest way to report accidents involving injuries.
Gather Evidence to Support Your Compensation Claim
Indiana law gives accident victims the right to compensation for their losses. However, it places the burden of proof on them. Therefore, in order to recover damages, you will need to prove accident fault and consequences.
Most of the evidence you need is available at the accident scene, so make sure you start from there. Here is what you should focus on:
- Taking photos of videos of the accident scene. Make sure they reveal vehicles position, make and model, weather and road conditions, damages.
- Record everything, from inculpatory statements (admission of fault, apologies) to intoxication signs
- Get statements and contact information from any witnesses, especially if those support your version of the facts. Keep in mind that they have no obligation to talk to you, so ask them politely.
- Write down the names and contact details of everyone present. If there are other drivers involved and they do not own the vehicle, you will need the vehicle owner’s data as well.
- Draw a diagram of the accident scene. Later on, you may forget details, and it is important to know exactly how the crash occurred. Take notes regarding the date and time of the accident, the speed of the vehicles, and the direction in which everyone was travelling.
Report the Crash to Your Insurer
Your insurance policy stipulates this obligation along with the one of cooperating with the insurer. It also teaches you how to report the accident. Make sure you comply, otherwise you could have a hard time recovering your losses.
If you find it difficult to cover everything above by yourself, there are accident reporting apps you can turn to. They will help you take photos, videos, report the crash, draw the diagram, get an exact location, and store statements and contact details. Some popular apps you can try are Google Accident Report, Allstate Mobile, and iTunes auto accident report.
Contacting an Indiana car accident lawyer is very important as well. As a car accident victim, you can recover much more than just property damage and medical bills. You can claim lost earnings, pain and suffering, and more.
However getting the compensation will not be easy. You will need to follow strict rules and procedures, provide evidence, and negotiate benefits. All these have to be done within specific time periods, while struggling to get your life back on track.
An Indiana auto accident attorney can help with everything. They can explain your rights and legal options, take over all formalities, and get you the compensation you deserve. With their help, you will save time and resources, and you will gain confidence and peace of mind.
Contact an Indiana Car Accident Attorney Now!
At Stewart|Phelps|Wood Injury Lawyers, we have been defending Indiana car accident victims for years. We know all about obtaining fair compensations and easing the claim process for our clients. Call our office and schedule a free consultation! It is the easiest way to benefit from the advice of one of the most experienced and dedicated car accident lawyers in Indiana!