Steps to Take After a Car Accident in Texas
If you are in a car accident in Texas, you may be eligible for compensation. Texas is a fault state for car accidents, meaning that drivers who cause collisions are financially responsible for their victims’ damages. You can recover this compensation through an insurance claim or personal injury lawsuit.
While each pathway to compensation involves different steps, they both require evidence. You will need to prove that the driver you are holding liable for your damages caused the collision. It is important to gather as much evidence as possible immediately after the accident.
#1: Call 911 and Report the Accident
Even if you do not believe your accident is serious, you should always call 911 and report your collision to law enforcement. The police officer will visit the scene and interview you, the other driver, and any witnesses in the area. After, he or she will create a report that you and your McAllen personal injury attorney can use as evidence in your future case.
The report will include a statement from the officer about how he or she believed the accident occurred. The officer will record key information such as names, addresses, and insurance information, which will also be helpful for your future case.
When speaking to the officer, avoid admitting fault or making any statements about your injuries. These statements could harm your future claim.
#2: Document Evidence at the Scene
Car accident evidence is freshest immediately after the collision. If you can move around the accident safely and without further injury, document and preserve as much evidence as possible. Ask any witnesses in the area for their contact information and exchange license, contact, and insurance details with the other driver. Collect any relevant physical evidence from the accident.
You should also photograph the following details from as many angles as possible.
- Your injuries
- Damage to both vehicles
- Damage to any of your personal property
- Glass, skid marks, and other debris
- Traffic signs and signals
#3: Seek Medical Attention
You should always seek medical attention after an accident, even if you believe your injuries are minor. Insurance companies will scrutinize your claim if you wait too long after the accident to seek medical attention. In addition, you may have underlying or internal injuries that require treatment, and complications can arise if you do not go to the hospital right away.
Your medical records will also be the most important pieces of evidence for your claim. You can use these records to establish the severity and cause of your injuries, as well as the treatment you had to receive to recover. These documents can prove your right to damages and help your attorney calculate your estimated case value. As soon as possible after the accident, go to the hospital and save every record related to your injuries.
#4: Contact an Attorney
After your accident, a representative from the at-fault company’s insurance company may contact you and ask for a statement. He or she may claim this statement will allow you to recover compensation faster. If this occurs, decline to provide a statement and contact an attorney as soon as possible.
Your car accident lawyer will advocate for your best interests during each stage of your claim, handling all aspects of your case so you can focus on recovery. He or she can evaluate your case and determine how much compensation you need, negotiating with the insurance company for a higher settlement if necessary.
After you receive medical attention for your injuries, contact a lawyer to discuss your path to compensation.