The first time you’re in a car accident, you may feel at a loss for what to do. It’s overwhelming and chaotic. You have no experience to lean on. You also desperately don’t want to make a mistake that will make your situation worse.
To help, here are four things you should not do:
- Leave the crash scene. Even if you think the crash is minor, talk to the other driver. Make sure everyone is all right. Exchange contact information and insurance information. Wait for the police to arrive if necessary.
- Fail to make a police report. People often do this when they don’t want to get the authorities and insurance companies involved. The other driver may offer to write you a check, for instance, to cover the damage. Don’t give in; it’s a common scam. Always file a police report and officially get the crash on record.
- Get angry. Yes, the other driver may have caused the crash. You may be angry that he or she did something so negligent and hurt you in the process. Try to keep your cool. Focus on understanding your legal rights to compensation and use them to make things right.
- Put off filing reports and insurance claims. Paperwork can be a hassle. Some people aren’t sure where to start, so they do nothing. Don’t let either issue hold you back. File those reports and claims as soon as you can.
Above all else, make sure you really know your legal options and what steps you need to take. Don’t do anything to undermine them, even accidentally.
Source: How Stuff Works, “5 Things You Should NOT Do After a Car Accident,” Patrick E. George, accessed March 08, 2018