If you or a loved one have been involved in a car accident, it can be a frightening and overwhelming experience. Even with increased road safety and regulation, millions of Americans are either injured or killed in car accidents each year. With auto accidents becoming an unfortunate commonality, it is imperative to know how to protect yourself and your legal rights if a car accident were to occur. Here, the team at the Law Offices of Peter T. McDowell outlines the important steps to take after a car accident in Maryland and how enlisting the help of an auto accident attorney can provide you with the right legal guidance and protection.
At the Scene of the Accident
If an accident were to result in injury, property damage, or death, drivers are required by Maryland state law to stop and remain at the scene. Call 911 immediately and get medical assistance, even if you feel that it may not be necessary. After calling 911, a police officer should be en route to the scene who will then conduct a police report and speak to everyone involved, even potential witnesses. If possible, you should then move the involved vehicles out of the way of oncoming traffic to prevent traffic jams and allow first responders a way to reach the scene. The next crucial step will be to obtain insurance and personal information, such as driver’s license number and car insurance details, of all other drivers involved in the accident, as well as any potential witnesses. It is also important to gather any evidence, such as vehicle damage, area conditions, traffic or security cameras, and specific details related to the cars involved in the accident, preferably through pictures if possible. This evidence could help you further down the road in your liability case if you decide to file a claim.
Notifying your Insurance Company
Once you have left the scene of the accident and have had time to decompress, take the time to write down everything that occurred leading up to, during, and following the accident, to the best of your ability. You should then call your insurance company to report the accident or contact your personal insurance agent to report the accident on your behalf. It is crucial to contact your insurance provider as soon as possible following the accident, as the longer you wait, you could lessen the chances of receiving adequate coverage. Notifying your car insurance company does not necessarily mean, however, that you can file a claim, even though speaking with an insurance agent can help you outweigh the pros and cons of doing so. Furthermore, cooperating with your insurance company is imperative, especially if you are seeking the best outcome regarding your coverage or a possible claim.
Medical Treatment, Filing a Claim, & More
Even if you don’t initially plan on filing a claim, be sure to keep records of all vehicle repairs or medical treatment, as these records could potentially help substantiate your damages. If your accident resulted in serious vehicle damages or injuries, be sure to consult with a trusted attorney before signing any documents. These documents could range from insurance agreements or legal documents from the other driver’s attorney. Not only does hiring an auto accident attorney help you deal with the legal implications of a car accident, but they can also serve as your main support system when enduring such a difficult time. To learn more about how an auto accident attorney can service you, click here.
Seek the Assistance of a Maryland Car Accident Attorney at the Law Offices of Peter T. McDowell
Seeking the help of an auto accident attorney can provide you with the ease and confidence you need when navigating a potential car accident claim. Peter T. McDowell has years of extensive relevant experience handling auto accident cases in Maryland and is prepared to fight for you to receive the compensation and justice you deserve. To learn more about Peter T. McDowell or schedule a consultation regarding a recent auto accident, contact us today.