The window of time right after an accident is critical, and it is important for accident victims to remain calm. Your main goal should be to get help first. Once help is on the way, you can take reasonable steps to protect your legal interests.
After a car accident, you should call 911 and make sure the dispatcher sends emergency medical responders and the police. Next, you should take steps to protect your potential legal claims if you can. Taking photos and jotting down details about the accident scene might greatly help an insurance claim or lawsuit in the near future. Talking to the police about your accident might be a necessary part of establishing a police report, which might be needed in an insurance claim. Later, your attorney can help you conduct your own investigation for evidence, such as nearby security cameras that might have recorded the accident. You should also talk to a lawyer as quickly as possible after a crash to begin discussing legal options.
For help after your crash, call our Georgia car accident lawyers of Howe Law at (844) 876-4357 and arrange a confidential evaluation of your case free of charge.
What to Do Right After a Car Crash in Georgia
After a car crash in Georgia, you or someone with you should call for help. While some people are able to reach for a cell phone and quickly call for help, the situation might be more difficult for others. You might not have a phone with you, or you might be too badly hurt to make the call. In that case, someone with you or the other driver should make the call.
When 911 is called, they should send the police and emergency medical personnel to the scene. You might speak with the police at the accident scene if they arrive first. If medical personnel arrive first, you might have to talk to the police at the hospital.
Regardless of who arrives to help first, you should not leave the scene until the authorities get there. Doing so might be considered a hit-and-run. If the other driver left the scene, immediately report it to law enforcement.
While you wait for the authorities to arrive, take note of as many details of the scene as you can. Are there any witnesses? Exchange information with them so they can be contacted later. Do you have a camera? Take pictures or record videos of the surrounding area. You never know how these details might be important later.
Speak to the Police Immediately After a Car Accident in Georgia
If you are taken to a hospital before you are able to speak with the police, make sure to contact them as soon as possible. Considering you were directly involved in the accident, the police will want your side of the story. You should also ask the police about their investigation and whether there will be a police report.
The police report is not admissible evidence in court as it is considered hearsay. However, depending on what the police are able to uncover, the police report might lead us to evidence we can use in your case against the other driver. The police report might contain details about any traffic violations committed by the other driver and if any citations were issued. The report might also have details about witnesses you were previously unaware of. On top of that, insurance companies often want to see a copy of the police report before paying for anything. Getting the names of the officers at the scene of your accident might help you obtain a copy of the report later.
In some cases, police reports provide information the injured driver had no idea about. For example, you might have been taken to the hospital quickly after the crash without speaking with the other driver. The police report might tell us that the police detected alcohol on the other driver’s breath when they investigated and that the other driver was charged with a DUI. Such information would be crucial to your case.
Scan the Crash Site for Evidence After a Georgia Car Accident
After you have received medical attention, you should hire a lawyer as soon as possible. Our Savannah car accident attorneys can help you return to the accident scene and scan for additional evidence and information. This might involve talking to people near the accident, taking photos of street signs and roadways to help us piece together how the accident happened, and looking for other details that might have been missed.
One important step you should take is to reach out to businesses and homes near the accident site and ask about possible security cameras. If there were cameras nearby, they might have caught the accident on video. If any such footage still exists, we must obtain it immediately. Video evidence of the crash happening in real time can be extremely powerful.
Preparing Your Legal Case After a Car Accident in Georgia
Once you get a lawyer, you can begin preparing your insurance claims and lawsuit immediately. Discuss all your legal options, including lawsuits, insurance claims, settlements, and anything else that might help you get full and fair compensation. It is best to have these discussions as soon as possible, as the statute of limitations begins counting down to your deadline to sue almost immediately.
You and your attorney should also assess your damages. Knowing how much compensation is on the line is crucial to making sure each step is the right one. Not only that, but damages are often more extensive and valuable than many plaintiffs realize. Talking things out with an attorney might lead to a greater claim for compensation than you initially realized.
After an Accident, Call Our Georgia Car Accident Lawyers for Help
Call our Georgia personal injury lawyers of Howe Law at (844) 876-4357 and schedule a private evaluation of your case at no cost to you.