Steps You Must Take After a Car Accident in Culpeper County, Virginia
It’s common for the immediate aftermath of a car crash to feel like a blur. Accident victims are often shocked, scared, and confused by what happened. Knowing the next steps to take is essential to protecting your rights and increasing your chance of securing compensation in an accident case.
Below are the steps you should follow after getting hurt in a car accident in Culpeper County, Virginia.
Call the Police
Virginia law requires anyone involved in an accident that causes an injury or death to stop as close as possible to the crash site. They should not, however, obstruct traffic or put themselves further in harm’s way. You must wait for law enforcement to arrive. If you drive away, it can lead to a hit-and-run charge.
An officer should investigate and write a report detailing their findings. You can request a copy when it’s available to use in your case.
Document the Scene
Your injury might be too severe to walk around and gather evidence. If so, stay where you are and wait for an ambulance to transport you to the hospital. However, if your injury is minor, gather evidence that might help prove what happened, such as photos of vehicle damage and road debris.
You can also talk to bystanders to determine if they saw the crash occur. Get their names and phone numbers to contact them later if necessary. They can provide the insurance company with a statement or testify in court if you file a lawsuit.
Obtain Information from Other Drivers
Ask all other drivers involved in the collision for their names, contact information, and insurance details. Regardless of which driver is at fault, you need to know all drivers’ auto insurance information to file a claim. More than one person might be liable, depending on the circumstances. Having this information helps ensure no delays in bringing a claim against them.
You must seek immediate treatment for your injury, even if it’s minor. Some symptoms don’t appear right away. Internal injuries are difficult to diagnose. Always be sure to tell everyone involved in your medical treatment everything that is wrong with you, no matter how minor it may seem. Also, and this is very important, if and when you are able, take pictures of all of your injuries.
If your injuries are severe, go to the hospital in an ambulance from the crash scene. For injuries that seem less serious, you should still go to the doctor after leaving the crash scene. Follow the doctor’s recommendation if they suggest you follow up with them in a few days or see a specialist. You should continue treating your injury until your medical providers release you from their care.
Keep a Pain Journal
A pain journal can benefit your case. Starting on the accident date, list your injuries and symptoms. Indicate your pain level and whether it worsens during specific activities, such as walking or bending. You should also describe each symptom and whether any affect your routine.
For example, if you started getting headaches after the crash, note whether it prevents you from going to work or caring for your family each day.
Your medical records and bills can be valuable evidence in a car accident claim. You should keep copies of every document related to your case. Those records can prove your injury occurred because of the collision and show your treatment expenses.
Consult a Lawyer
An experienced car accident attorney can simplify your life by handling every aspect of your case so you can focus on recovering. They will investigate, gather evidence, file a claim, and negotiate a settlement on your behalf. They can also file a lawsuit if necessary to seek the compensation you deserve.
Seek Justice After a Car Accident
Davies, Barrell, Will, Lewellyn & Edwards, PLC has over 45 years of legal experience. Our full-service law firm provides dependable legal representation to clients in the areas we serve in Virginia. If you sustained an injury in a car crash caused by someone else’s negligence, call us for a free consultation today.