What To Do In A Car Accident Involving Injuries
Remain At The Scene!
Illinois law requires drivers involved in an injury or property damage accident to remain at the scene and exchange information. Be sure to get the other driver’s license number, plate number, insurance company and policy number. The best way to give and receive this information is through the police officer.
Call For An Ambulance!
If someone has been injured, call or have someone call an ambulance.
Call The Police!
Always call the police. Police officers are trained in investigating accidents. The police report will be very important in proving fault.
Report The Accident To Your Insurance Company!
As soon as possible call your insurance agent and report the accident.
Do Not Give A Statement To The Other Driver’s Insurance Company!
The insurance company of the other driver and you have different economic interests. Your interest is to be fairly compensated and their interest is to pay you nothing or as little as possible for your medical bills, lost income and suffering.
The real purpose in taking a recorded statement from you by a trained and skilled adjuster is to defeat or harm your case. What you say in a recorded statement will be used against you and almost never will be used to help you. To protect your rights do not even talk to the insurance adjuster until you have sought legal advice.
Many people are under the mistaken impression that the issuance of a traffic ticket in an accident means that the ticketed driver is at fault and that a jury in a personal injury case will find out which driver received the ticket. Only when a person pleads guilty to a traffic ticket or makes some other admission of liability in traffic court will a jury in a personal injury case know who got the ticket. If the other driver or you receive a traffic ticket in an injury or property damage accident, protect your legal rights — seek legal advice.
Seek continued medical care if pain persists and tell your doctor where you hurt!
If your injuries and complaints of pain are not corroborated by the medical records, you stand to lose reimbursement for your medical bills, lost income, and compensation for injuries and suffering.
Many accident victims suffer injuries to more than one part of their body, for example, an arm and leg. If both your arm and leg hurt, tell your doctor of both conditions even if your arm hurts more than your leg. If the first entry in your doctor’s records of leg pain is not in close proximity to the accident or you do not tell the doctor about your leg pain at each appointment, the other driver’s insurance company may dispute your leg injury. In a lawsuit, the insurance company lawyer will seize upon your inadvertent omission and portray you to the jury as either faking or exaggerating. Do not put yourself in this position. Succinctly tell the doctor where you hurt.
Protect Your Rights!
It is up to you to protect your rights. If you are wrongfully injured you may be entitled to be reimbursed for medical bills and lost income from the at-fault driver’s insurance company. You may also be entitled to compensation for your injuries, suffering and disability. If the at-fault driver does not have insurance, you may be able to make an uninsured motorist claim against your insurance company.