Car accidents bring misfortune into our lives. Often the first accident is the most unsettling. If bad luck, bad timing or poor driving lands you in an accident, a basic understanding of accident law will help you know what to do.
Stay at the scene
Accident laws require you to stay at the scene. Remain at the scene of the accident until a law enforcement officer tells you that you can leave. If you have any doubt regarding the severity of the accident and whether you need to remain at the scene, err on the side of staying and reporting the accident.
Protect the injured
Look after anyone who appears injured. Remember not to move an injured personyou might aggravate their condition. Contact the police, or have someone else contact the police. Make sure to tell them how many persons have been injured so they can respond appropriately. Employ your emergency blinkers, and if you have flares, use those as well to safeguard the accident scene.
If you are uninjured, try to obtain some of the following information:
- The other driver’s name, address, insurance information, license plate number and driver license number
- The location of the accident, and notes on how the accident occurred
- The business card of the responding police officer and an incident number do you can obtain an accident report
- Basic contact information for any witnesses to the accident
Do not admit liability
Even if you think you caused the accident, do not admit liability. You cannot know what condition the other driver was in when the accident occurred, or whether other mitigating factors exist. Be sure to speak only with police officers about the accident, and speak as little as possible to other parties. In case of severe accidents, an attorney with knowledge of Philadelphia wrongful death law may be necessary.
Seek medical assistance
Pennsylvania is a no-fault state, meaning your insurance covers medical expenses arising from a car accident. However, you must seek medical care immediately, or your insurer may claim that your problems arose from something other than the accident. Insurers may also make this claim if your accident leads to litigation, so for health and legal reasons you should seek medical attention as quickly as possible.
Obtain legal advice
If you are injured in a car accident, or worse, if you lose a loved one, you will want legal counsel. The Philadelphia accident lawyers of Soloff & Zervanos, P.C. have extensive experience handling personal injury and wrongful death law in Philadelphia. Contact them today for a free consultation.