Whether it’s minor or severe, any car accident can be a stressful situation. That’s why we’ve assembled some frequently asked questions – and answers from our trained and experienced lawyers who focus on accident cases:
If I’m in a car accident, should I immediately stop?
YES! Any time a person is involved in a car crash, they MUST STOP. It doesn’t matter whether the accident involves another moving vehicle, a parked car, a person, or someone else’s property, drivers are required to stop. It’s the law.
Any time a person leaves the scene of an accident, they can be charged with a hit-and-run, even when the accident wasn’t their fault.
If the accident involves a parked vehicle or a person’s property, you have an obligation to find the owner. If you cannot find them, you should notify police of the incident and leave behind your name, phone number and insurance information in a place where the owner would find it, like their windshield, mailbox or front door.
What do I do if someone is injured? What do I do if I’m injured?
If any person involved in the accident is hurt, immediately call 911 and clearly explain that a person has been injured in a car accident. Immediate medical attention can often be the difference between life and death, or serious complications.
If you are in too much pain or do not have a phone, shout for help.
What information should I be getting at the scene of an accident?
It is crucial to get as much information about your accident as possible. You’ll want to talk to others involved in your accident, witnesses and police. Here are some things to consider:
- The other driver’s name, address, date of birth, and telephone number
- The other driver’s license number and expiration date
- Their insurance provider
- The make, model, year, license plate numbers and expiration dates of all vehicles involved in the crash
- If a driver is not the owner of the vehicle, you’ll need the owner’s name, address, telephone number and insurance provider
- The name, address, and telephone number of any witnesses to the accident
- The names, addresses, and telephone numbers of any passengers in other vehicles
- Write down your recollection of the accident, including the time, where it occurred and what happened
- If you have a camera phone, take pictures! These photos can be used as evidence later on
- Write down the road and weather conditions at the time of the crash, and take note of anything out of the ordinary, like street lights being off at night
If you or family member has been injured in a crash, contact an experienced car accident attorney at The Barnes Firm as soon as possible.
Do I have to report an accident?
Depending on the severity of the car accident, you may need to contact police, and ALWAYS call your insurance company. Be sure to ask your agent what paperwork needs to be done and if there are other necessary reports that need to be made on the accident.
What to do if the accident was my fault?
Under no circumstances should you ever admit fault to an accident – even if you believe you made a mistake. Many times, the other driver could also be at fault; maybe they were texting or drinking and driving. There are several factors that should be analyzed, and the police or your attorney could determine that the accident really wasn’t your fault.
Stick to the facts when reporting an accident to police.
What if I get a ticket?
Getting a ticket does NOT admit guilt. It is simply a promise to appear in court. If you refuse to sign a ticket, the officer could arrest you, and that will put you in a more difficult situation. If you’re injured and believe the accident was not your fault and you received a ticket, contact the Los Angeles and San Diego car accident lawyers at The Barnes Firm. Our experienced team of attorneys and paralegals could help you get the best result possible.
The Barnes Firm 1-(800) 800-0000