What to Do After a Car Accident in Bethesda

There are many things an individual needs to keep in mind after a car accident, from making sure he or she gets the proper medical attention they need, to avoiding common mistakes many people make after a collision. Retaining a knowledgeable Bethesda car accident lawyer to help with the case is important to not only help an individual with their claim, but to also ensure the individual is acting in his or her interests.

Seek Medical Attention

The first thing a person should do after a car accident is seek medical attention. People often decline medical attention at the accident scene either because they do not think it is necessary or because they are embarrassed of the situation. It is important, however, to be evaluated by a healthcare professional so that a person can understand the nature and extent of his or her injuries and concentrate on recovery.

Contact the Police

The second thing a person should do when involved in a motor vehicle accident is contact the police. The police should report to the scene and, at minimum, exchange contact information between those involved in the motor vehicle accident. Ideally, the police will create a police report, which will contain all the contact information and insurance information for all parties involved, along with any witness information, if available.

Contact an Attorney

The final thing a person should do when they are injured in a motor vehicle accident is contact an experienced accident attorney in Bethesda to handle the claim. The attorney can assist in handling the claim and answer any questions that they may have regarding how the claim will progress and how long the claim will be opened before they receive any compensation.

Mistakes After a Car Accident

There are a few issues that come up regularly that people should be conscious of when they are involved in a motor vehicle accident. An issue that occurs often is that a person involved in a motor vehicle accident, who is not at fault for the accident, has a propensity to say, “I’m sorry,” or make an apology at the accident scene. 

Anyone involved in a motor vehicle accident should understand that if they make such a statement immediately following the accident, that statement can be used at trial. Regardless of how the collision occurred, the defense will use their statement. If an injured person is found to be at fault for the motor vehicle accident, it could have a significant impact on their ability to recover.

The other mistake that people often make is that they freely provide a recorded statement to the at-fault partys insurance company. When people are involved in a motor vehicle accident, typically both parties report the accident to their insurance companies. When this is done, an insurance company will likely contact the at-fault party and request that he or she provides a recorded statement.

If a person has retained an attorney, the attorney can advise as to whether a recorded statement is required and/or whether providing the recorded statement is in their best interest. Each case is individual and has a certain set of facts and circumstances, and therefore, whether providing a recorded statement is in the best interest of the client really depends upon the individual case, so it is always best to contact an attorney.

Avoiding These Mistakes

A way to avoid these mistakes is to meet with and retain an experienced accident attorney near you as soon as possible. This will allow the attorney to provide the injured person with as much information as needed. The attorney will be in a beneficial position to advise the injured person on what to do to process that individual claim.

Why People Make These Mistakes

People apologize at the accident scene when its not their fault because they are either embarrassed or they are trying to be courteous to the other person involved. No one realizes that there are repercussions for these courteous statements. Likewise, people provide a recorded statement to the insurance company because they mistakenly believe that if they cooperate with the insurance company then the insurance company will process their claim faster and they will receive their compensation faster.

Unfortunately, people do not realize that insurance companies will take every opportunity to defend their insured from any claim to minimize any payments made. Therefore, any investigation that is done by the insurance company is done in an effort to either deny the claim or reduce the amount owed. Sometimes people do not understand this and they can move blindly through the claim process without understanding the bias or motivation of the other party.