3 Things You Must Do After A Florida Car Accident
November 22, 2020 – Michael S. Herman, Jr., Esq.
1. Call the police to the scene and ask them to make a report. Without a formal record of the accident, you may have trouble making an insurance claim for vehicle damage or injuries later. The police report also serves many other purposes. It will contain the contact information and insurance information for everyone involved in the crash, which helps you if you need to make a claim for property damage or injuries later. The report will contain a narrative report about how the accident happened and diagram of the accident, along with a finding of which driver was at fault. If any tickets are issued, such as for careless driving or running a red light, they may be listed in the report. You can usually obtain a copy of the police report within 5-7 days after a crash. In Florida, police reports of accidents are known as “Long Form Traffic Crash Reports” and can be obtained online for a small fee by anyone involved in the crash or their lawyer.
2. Take photographs of the vehicle damage AND scene. Photographs can be a great tool for documenting an accident scene and may help you prove your property damage or injury case later. Be sure to take photographs from multiple angles and of the vehicles at final rest in case there is any dispute about who caused the accident later. There is no such thing as having too many photographs of vehicle damage or the crash scene. If you are injured and unable to take photographs, call a friend or family member to come to the scene and take photographs for you. Photographs of vehicle damage and the accident scene may end up being the most compelling evidence in your entire case.
3. HIRE AN ATTORNEY – It seems obvious, but hiring an attorney is the most important decision you can make after a car accident. An experienced car accident attorney gives you the best chance of recovery against the insurance companies who back negligent drivers. Immediately hiring an attorney after a car accident can help protect your legal rights. An attorney can perform tasks on your behalf such as notifying your insurance company of the car crash. Delay in reporting the crash could possibly give your insurance company grounds to deny you insurance coverage for the accident. Once a claim has been opened with all the insurance companies involved, your attorney can begin investigating your accident by obtaining witness statements, damage photographs, black box downloads, and other evidence regarding the crash.
There are many things you must do to protect your legal rights after a car accident, and this list is just a start. Hiring an attorney is the best way to make sure the insurance companies and their attorneys do not take advantage of you and underpay your property damage or injury claim. From making sure your car is repaired quickly to getting you money for emergency medical treatment, an experienced attorney can help you navigate the fallout after a car accident.
The injury lawyers at Britto & Herman know the steps that need to be taken following a car accident, and we act fast. For a free consultation to discuss your recent car accident call (561) 835-5555(561) 835-5555
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