What Details Need to be Exchanged Between Drivers After a Car Accident?

When you’re involved in a car accident, the first and most important step you should take is to make sure you, your passengers, and all other parties are okay. Whether your accident was serious or not, the moments after can be terrifying. There’s a high chance that you’re in shock or confused. Not only are you worried about what just happened, but now you’re concerned about damages, injuries, and the next steps you’re supposed to take.

In the aftermath of a car accident, knowing the proper course of action can help simplify the claims process and potentially reduce the severity of any injuries. At The Barnes Firm, we recognize that car accidents can’t always be prevented, and when they do occur, victims need to be informed of what actions they must take and what rights they have. The following information will give you an overview of one of the most crucial steps you must take after an accident: exchanging information.

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What Information Should I Gather at the Scene of the Accident?

The steps you take after a car accident have the potential to impact your claim. If you don’t follow the necessary procedures, you may not be able to receive the full compensation you deserve. One step that is often looked over is the exchange of information between you and the other driver or drivers who were involved in the accident. Although exchanging information doesn’t seem like a big deal, not obtaining enough accurate information can make things difficult when it comes time to file a police report or talk to your insurance provider.

You are legally responsible to share and exchange the following information:

  • Driver’s license information
  • Auto insurance company
  • Vehicle registration

From these documents, all parties will be able to obtain the names, addresses, policy numbers, driver’s license numbers, and license plate numbers. While this information is necessary, there is additional information you may want to jot down for insurance purposes. This includes:

  • Location of the accident
  • Date and time
  • Police names and badge number
  • Multiple photographs
  • Names and numbers of witnesses

All this information can help you keep track of the exact details concerning your accident, making your claims process as seamless as possible.

driver making a phone call after being rear ended in a car accident
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What If the Other Driver or Drivers Refuse to Exchange Information?

Even though you may be willing to exchange information, the other driver or drivers involved may refuse to give you theirs. While you may not be worried about involving insurance companies and handling the accident through the claims process, others may have several reasons why they would withhold their information. For example, a driver may worry about the consequences of the accident on their insurance premium or the influx of points to their license. If the other driver has a bad driving history or is a high-risk driver, they might fear losing their license or their insurance policy.

If you’re put in a situation where the other driver or drivers refuse to exchange information with you, then you need to take another crucial step following your car accident—notifying the authorities. Most people are aware that if injuries are sustained in a crash, then the police and emergency medical services need to be contacted immediately. However, there are other instances where you may need to call the police in New York, including:

  • If vehicles are unable to be moved and are blocking the roadways
  • If the other driver or drivers don’t have a driver’s license
  • If the other driver or drivers attempt to flee the scene of the accident

It’s important to remember that even if you’re at fault in the accident, complying with the law can prevent you from having to deal with other consequences. Gathering information, calling authorities, and obtaining the necessary documentation are all steps that protect your best interests and could be an asset to your claim.

Los Angeles Car Accident Attorneys Ready to Evaluate Your Claim

At The Barnes Firm, we strive to assist car accident victims with their insurance and personal injury claims to ensure they receive the maximum compensation for any losses they’ve endured. That’s why it is vital that you know how to handle the moments after your accident, including exchanging information and calling law enforcement when needed. As soon as you gather all documentation, speak to our experienced car accident attorneys for an evaluation of your claim.

Our team has helped hundreds of car accident victims in Los Angeles recover millions of dollars in compensation for their injuries, and we are eager to do the same for you. Our trusted Los Angeles car accident attorneys are available 24/7 to discuss your accident. Contact us by calling our office or completing a contact form.

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