Most mistakes following Atlanta car accidents are simply responses influenced by shock and adrenaline, because your brain cannot process information normally when it is in a heightened stressful state. People forget things and the brain’s analytical capabilities are compromised when processing a new, and suddenly stressful situation. Car accidents are not routine events in the life of a driver, and experiencing one will likely be something that is totally foreign to you, or something that you have not had to undergo in a very long time. While the hope for every driver on the road is that an accident never has to be experienced, the low frequency with which people find themselves in accident situations is a large factor in why the mistakes that are made tend to be made often.
Taking precautions to prepare yourself for an accident, such as having a checklist, or a designated and reliable contact to call for guidance in the immediate aftermath, is one way to avoid many mistakes that could hinder the success of your accident claim. The very first thing you should do after an accident is ensure that you are safe, and contact authorities for police help or medical attention. Once your safety is no longer in question, you should contact an Atlanta car accident lawyer to work alongside you to prevent you from making mistakes, and to fight for the compensation you deserve.
One of the biggest mistakes people can make is to discuss their injuries with anyone other than their doctor, other medical professionals, or their lawyer. It is imperative for individuals to refrain from discussing their injuries with their own insurance company, and even more important that they do not talk to the other driver’s insurance company. Any statements made about how someone feels or the status of their injuries after a car accident are likely influenced by adrenaline, which results in statements that are recorded before the brain has been able to process what happened. Injuries are not always felt immediately, so making statements too quickly can easily result in material for insurance companies to use against the claimant later on.
Insurance companies know when and how to ask leading questions to manipulate drivers into making statements that will go against their case and impair potential recovery. Oftentimes, people do not want to call the police because they would rather move on with their days than deal with the hassle of reporting a minor accident, but it is crucial to report all accidents to authorities and get official written reports of what happened.
It is quite common, in many Atlanta accidents, that the injuries seem less serious until after the adrenaline has subsided and the pain sets in. Sometimes, this will occur in the days following the accident, and not calling the police will seriously impair a claimant’s ability to recover. One of the most important things to do when at the scene and safely able to do so is to take photos. Failure to take photos of all involved vehicles will make it exceedingly difficult for an attorney to advocate on behalf of their client when dealing with insurance companies later on.
If someone is unable to take photos because of their injuries or because it poses a risk to their safety, it is best to ask someone to help and take pictures of the accident scene and all involved vehicles, because it is critically important to document as much evidence and information as possible.
Finally, drivers should never make any admissions of fault or apology. It is important to report facts, what the driver was doing, and what was experienced. It is not the driver’s job to assess the aftermath of the scene to determine who was at fault, because each person can only report what they experienced.
The best ways to avoid some of these common mistakes is to keep a reference card in your vehicle with your registration and insurance information, as well as a checklist. There are plenty of these available on the internet about how to best proceed immediately following an accident, and an Atlanta car accident lawyer is able to thoroughly guide you through the best path to take in your case.