A car accident can turn your life upside down in an instant. You might feel dazed, in shock, or panicked in the immediate aftermath of the crash. Feeling confused and unsure of your next steps is normal, particularly if you suffered serious injuries in the collision.
Protecting your health and your right to seek compensation for your injuries is crucial after a wreck. And it can start at the crash scene. Use the following tips to protect your rights after a car accident.
Document Everything at the Accident Scene
Photos and videos are valuable evidence in car accident cases. If you can, take pictures of the serious damage to your vehicle, your injuries, skid marks on the road, traffic signs, hazards or obstructions, and anything else you believe contributed to the accident.
Do Not Admit Fault
Apologizing is often our first instinct after an accident. But when it comes to motor vehicle crashes, saying you’re sorry might be interpreted as an admission of guilt. Check on other motorists to ensure their safety, but do not speculate about the cause of the accident or admit fault. Likewise, be polite to police officers but do not take responsibility for the crash. Any admission of fault could be used to deny or reduce your compensation.
Get Medical Attention
See a doctor as soon as possible after a crash. A physician can rule out signs of internal injuries that you may not feel yet. It can take time for symptoms of some trauma, such as whiplash or a concussion, to emerge. Make an appointment with your doctor as soon as you feel any pain or notice worrisome symptoms. Your doctor will add the injuries to your medical record, which is essential evidence in a car accident claim.
Save Copies of Every Document
Make copies of your medical bills, invoices, receipts of accident-related expenses, property damage, and other documents demonstrating the losses you suffered from the crash. These can help your car accident attorney place an appropriate value on your case.
Understand the Types of Compensation You May Pursue
Under Michigan law, all drivers must carry no-fault insurance, which means a motorist first turns to their own auto insurance company to get compensation after a collision. You do not need to prove fault to claim these benefits, which cover your medical expenses and lost wages up to a certain amount, depending on the policy you purchased.
In most cases, no-fault insurance bars a driver from suing another motorist after a collision, even if the other driver is at fault for the crash. However, if the victim suffers serious injuries according to Michigan law, they may be eligible to receive compensation for pain and suffering and excess medical bills, and lost wages. An experienced auto accident attorney can determine whether you qualify to file a lawsuit after reviewing your case.
Learn What to Expect When Filing a Car Accident Claim
Putting together a car accident claim involves paperwork, investigations, gathering evidence, determining fault, meeting deadlines, and more. That’s a difficult undertaking for anyone recovering from a serious injury. Hiring a lawyer takes the pressure off. While you recuperate, your attorney can file the required documents, respond to requests, negotiate with the insurance company, and advise you during settlement negotiations.
Contact a Michigan Car Accident Lawyer for a Free Consultation
Christensen Law is a premier personal injury law firm with offices throughout Michigan. If you’ve been hurt in a motor vehicle accident, our attorneys will go the distance in pursuit of the money you deserve. Call or contact us today for a free case review.