Personal injury laws can be complex and confusing. When you’re in a car accident, especially if you’re injured, you’re already scared and confused enough without having to worry about what to do next. The best thing you can possibly do for yourself is to be well educated before an accident ever happens, so in case you are involved in one, you can act without thinking. Learn about what to do if you’re hurt in an accident in New Jersey, and how a personal injury attorney can help every step of the way.
The First Moments
The first moments after your injury are crucial. Take a moment to breathe and try to calm down. Being upset or angry won’t help the situation at all and can even lead to you making critical mistakes. Then, take stock of the situation. Are you all right? Is anyone else at the scene seriously hurt? Call for any medical attention that may be needed. The first order of business is to make sure that anyone who is hurt gets taken care of.
Documenting the New Jersey Car Accident Scene
After calling for police and an ambulance (if needed), document everything about the accident. Take detailed notes about what happened. Take photos of the entire scene. Exchange information including insurance and contact info with the other parties involved. Talk to witnesses and get their information and statements.
Never, ever apologize for anything at the scene. This is crucial—it can lead to problems should you have to take the case to arbitration or trial later. Also, never leave the scene before everything is squared away. Leaving the scene of an accident can open you up to criminal charges for hit-and-run. It can be a good idea to have the police come even if it’s just a minor accident. A police report can be helpful to your cause later.
Contact Your Insurance Company
Contact your insurance company as soon as possible to let them know what happened. Do this even if the accident was not your fault. Be open and completely honest about the situation and circumstances. New Jersey is a no-fault state, which means you will deal with your insurance company rather than the other party’s, and your insurance company will represent you in taking care of the repairs and damages.
Calling an Attorney When You’re Hurt in an Accident
The very next thing you should do is seek the services of a New Jersey personal injury attorney. This is because you want to be sure you get all of the compensation to which you are entitled so that you can recover, heal and get your life back in order. You’ll want to do this quickly, as there is a statute of limitations and the clock is ticking!
Insurance companies, sadly, aren’t in the business of profiting from paying out, and they will often try to get you to sign off on settlements that are lower than you deserve. Never sign anything without first discussing it with your attorney.
In addition, there’s no reason not to consult an attorney. It won’t cost you a dime, you have no obligation for a consultation, and there won’t be any fees unless your attorney wins the case. If you have been hurt in an accident in New Jersey, read about our car accident injury services and contact us for a consultation about your case today.