What to Do After a Car Accident

after a car accidentGetting into a car accident can be pretty frustrating. Immediately following the accident, it is imperative that you stay calm and level headed. One of the first things you should do is call your local car insurance agency. At Lakewood Financial, we act as your claims advocate and you should talk to us first before you call the car insurance company. Besides that, just follow these simple tips on what to do after a car accident.

  1. First and foremost, if someone is injured, call 911 immediately.
  2. If the accident was minor and your car is drivable, carefully steer your car out of the flow of traffic.
  3. Turn on your vehicle’s hazard lights. If you have warning triangles or cones, use them to help alert traffic to avoid even further damage.
  4. Call the police. If it’s minor, they may not come out to the scene, but you should request an accident report.
  5. Take pictures and video of the accident scene and of the damages.
  6. Be polite to the other driver, but protect yourself. Even if you think you were at fault, do not admit fault or apologize. Make sure that you get the other car owner’s:
    • name
    • contact info
    • make and model of the vehicle
    • driver’s license number
    • car insurance carrier & policy number.
  7. If there are witnesses, get their contact information too (first and last name and phone number should be sufficient).

Above all, please remember to protect yourself. Even if you think that the other driver is being reasonable, admitted fault, and you’re ready to hold hands and skip through a field together, err on the side of caution. This person is not your friend, and could easily be lulling you into a false sense of security, later leaving you up the creek without a paddle. Ultimately ending in increased car insurance premiums. Don’t let this happen to you.