What do I do after a car wreck?
Below is a list of the Top 10 things to remember after a Georgia car wreck:
- STOP! Never leave the scene of a wreck regardless of whether anyone is injured.
- CALL 911: In Georgia, drivers that are involved in a wreck resulting in injuries, death, or property damage exceeding $500.00 must report the wreck to the authorities. O.C.G.A. § 40-6-273
- TAKE PICTURES: If it is safe to do so, take pictures of the scene as well as the property damage to all vehicles. Also, take pictures of all injuries.
- EXCHANGE INFORMATION: Get the contact information and insurance information from all parties involved in the wreck. Also, get the name of the investigating police officer and ask for a case number so you can obtain a copy of the accident report.
- GET CONTACT INFORMATION FROM WITNESSES: If any witnesses stop to help, get their information. Disinterested witnesses are often the key to resolving cases where liability is disputed.
- NOTIFY YOUR INSURANCE COMPANY: Notify your insurance company that you have been in a wreck regardless of whether it was your fault.
- BE CAREFUL WHAT YOU SAY: Anything you say can be used against you in a legal proceeding. You must cooperate with the authorities and your insurance company but you are not required to give a statement to the other driver or his insurance company.
- SEEK MEDICAL CARE: If you are injured, go to the doctor. Tell your doctor exactly what is hurting and comply with all of his or her instructions.
- KEEP AN INFORMATION FILE: Create a file and make notes of all of your observations at the scene. Note all conversations you have with the insurance companies and keep a list of all doctors visits.
- GET AN ATTORNEY: In most cases, you will need an attorney to keep the insurance company from taking advantage of you. Insurance adjusters are skilled negotiators and will do everything possible to pay you as little as they can to resolve your claim. A skilled personal injury attorney can help maximize the value of your claim.