Clear thought under stress is something most folks aren't capable of. When the feces hits the fan, most brains turn off. It's understandable. Fight or flight, right? You don't need your brain to run away or to throw a punch. Adrenaline turns the mental processes off.
If you've ever been T-boned by an inattentive driver that plowed through a stop sign on a sunny Saturday morning, you've felt that rush of shock, followed by a burst of anger, followed by exhaustion. Most people know that after a car accident, they should get the other driver's insurance information. That's only the start, however.
FindLaw's newest guide is so darn simple and obvious that it is absolutely brilliant. That's a lot of well-deserved positive adjectives for a checklist of things to do after an accident.
We've talked about the proper post-collision procedures on this blog a few times. Check for injuries, document everything, and take pictures with your cell phone (assuming you've upgraded phones since 1995). If the accident is anything more than a few hundred dollars worth of damage, call the police for an accident report. Follow up with your physician of you feel any pain the next few days. Contact your insurance company.
Most of all - admit nothing! Even if you were texting while eating a McDouble and yelling at your children for spilling fries on the floor, do not admit anything. Leave the discussion of fault for the insurance companies and lawyers. And seriously, turn off the damn phone.
This is a lot to remember. When both of your passenger doors are pushed in by the elderly neighbor's errant Buick, you are going to be too furious and freaked out to remember all of this information.
Do yourself (and your family) a favor. Download the FindLaw Auto Accident Checklist. Print off a copy for each of your cars. Print off a copy for your mother's car. Hide one in your daughter's glove compartment. It is, after all, completely free. It's also full of pretty good advice.
If we do say so ourselves.
- Discuss Your Case With a New York Personal Injury Attorney (FindLaw)
- Car Accident Basics (FindLaw's Learn About the Law)
- Beamer vs. Bentley: When Drunks Collide, Who is Liable? (FindLaw's New York Personal Injury Law Blog)
- After a Motor Vehicle Accident (FindLaw's Learn About the Law)