Every motorist has a legal duty of care while driving to ensure their safety and that of other road users isn’t compromised. It’s no secret that accidents happen every day. While most motorists are careful, others drive carelessly, increasing the chances of causing an accident. If you’ve sustained injuries as a result of the negligent acts of a motorist, you should be compensated.
Personal injury is the body of law that addresses accident lawsuits, including car accidents. A personal accident litigator helps car accident casualties get justice for their losses, including injuries and damaged property. If you, or a loved one, has been involved in a car accident anywhere in Alaska, you should consult a car accident attorney in Alaska. So, what steps should be taken after a car accident?
Step to Take After a Crash
Car accidents happen in split seconds and can turn your life upside down in the blink of an eye. Minor accidents can cause property damage while major accidents cause both property damage and severe injuries–and the injured person should recover damages. The process of recovering damages starts right at the scene of an accident.
Undoubtedly, can foretell a car accident, and unfortunately, it can happen anytime, and when you’re least prepared. When the accident happens, here’s what an injured person should do.
- Secure Evidence at the Accident Scene
This is arguably the most important step in the compensation process because personal injury claims verdicts are greatly influenced by the evidence submitted by a plaintiff. Therefore, you should document everything; what appears negligible to you might be what a personal injury lawyer would need to triumph. The following important information should be gathered at the accident scene:
- When the accident happened–date and time;
- The faulting driver’s contact details, including name, postal address, telephone number, driver’s license details, and email address;
- Witness accounts;
- Witness details, including their names and contact details.
- Photos of the accident scene; your mobile phone can work just fine. You could request someone at the scene to help you take the photos if you’re injured. The photos provide evidence of the severity of injuries and how they’ve negatively impacted your life.
- Seek Medical Attention
Your life, health, and full recovery are more important than anything else. Medical attention or treatment is an essential step in getting an accident casualties life back to normal. The standard advice is to go for a medical checkup even when the injuries are minor. Some injuries, particularly internal injuries, are typically hard to detect and the symptoms might take a while to manifest, risking other health complications. Be honest with your doctor and don’t exaggerate anything.
You should document your medication, including a doctor’s report, prescription drugs, medical expenses, and everything else associated with your injuries–the documented medical report will be crucial if the case goes to trial.
- Reporting the Accident
Car accidents should be reported to the nearest police station within 24 hours. In some jurisdictions, a police officer must visit an accident scene after being notified. Other jurisdictions allow casualties to report accidents over the phone. You should contact a personal injury lawyer for clarification on accident reporting in your jurisdiction.
- Contact a Personal Injury Lawyer
Contacting an attorney should be the next course of action after reporting to the police. Most personal injury attorneys offer a free consultation to victims of accidents and evaluate the facts surrounding their situations to determine whether they’re liable or whether they have a case to answer, or not. The lawyer will recommend appropriate legal options to resolve the case after establishing you’re entitled to damages for injuries or property.
Recoverable Damages in Car Accident Claims
The aim of filing a personal injury is to recover damages for injuries or property and the damages can include:
Bodily Injury Damages
You are entitled to damages for physical injuries resulting from a car accident, the faulting party or their insurance should compensate you. If the faulting party, you should compensate the injured person. In both scenarios, bodily injury damages are classified in the following ways:
- Medical Expenses
Medical costs should include money spent to treat accident injuries and any associated expenses, including the expenses incurred during doctor’s appointments. The amount allocated for medical expenses should be able to cater the past, current, and future medication.
- Damages for Lost Income
if the injuries were severe, you’re probably incapacitated hence, not working. Damages for lost income should be commensurate lost wages or the income you should have earned during the recovery process.
A personal injury lawyer can help you arrive at a realistic figure for lost wages. Some jurisdictions have capped the maximum amount that can be recovered for lost wages.
Property damages focus on vehicle repair and other personal property damaged in an accident. If you can successfully prove that you had such property at the time of an accident, then you’re entitle to recover property damages.
If you file a car accident claim independently, you must provide sufficient evidence to build a strong case. However, you can book a free consultation with a personal injury law for the evaluation of your case and free legal advice.