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5 steps you should remember to take after a car crash

Most of us hope to go a lifetime without ever getting involved in a car accident. Statistically, though, very few of us will be that fortunate. And with more and more cars crowding our streets and highways every year, chances of avoiding an accident are going down.

Whether it is a minor fender-bender or a multiple car pile up, there is no question that a car crash will turn our lives upside down. When injuries are involved, taking the right steps is even more important. So, will you know what to do if you find yourself along side the road with the other driver, inspecting the damage to your vehicles? 

First, remain calm. The less said the better and NEVER apologize to the other driver. Now let's look at five steps to take after your nerves are under control.


1. Call 911

If you are in a car crash, call 911 to report the accident, even if there are no injuries. Calling 911 is top priority if someone needs medical assistance.

2. Trade insurance information

Exchange insurance information with the other driver. Small talk is fine, but do not engage in a lengthy conversation, especially to discuss who was at fault.

3. Obtain a police report

Call the police to report the crash. Even if the damage to your vehicle is minor, the law enforcement officer who comes to the scene will make out a report. Ask for a copy. This will be important for your attorney to use in preparing to settle an insurance claim on your behalf.

4. Gather information

Jot down pertinent information, such as the date and time of the crash and the weather conditions. Take down the contact information of the other driver and the license plate number of the other vehicle. If there were any witnesses, ask if you may have their contact information. Also, take photos of the crash scene, any markers such as street signs and the damage to your vehicle. Take the pictures from different angles. Your cellphone camera will be very useful in this activity.

5. See a doctor

Except for your jangled nerves, you may feel fine after a minor collision, but it is essential that you seek a medical evaluation promptly because there could be underlying injuries. Symptoms sometimes do not appear for hours, even days. The doctor’s report will be important not only in terms of your well-being, but also because it will tie your injuries directly to the accident, which is essential for insurance purposes. In fact, of all the steps you should take after a minor car crash, seeking prompt medical attention is perhaps the most important.

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  • $4,391,000: Judgment entered on Oakland County jury verdict, 2008. A Michigan man suffered traumatic brain injuries in a motor vehicle accident, which caused a permanent seizure disorder. View More results
  • $2,536,454: Verdict for no-fault benefits for client severely injured in motor vehicle accident. 2012.
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  • $1,400,000: Verdict for no-fault benefits due to a traumatically brain injured client, in this Washtenaw County action against Allstate Insurance Company. View More results
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