Any decent auto accident attorney will tell you that it’s the details that make or break a car collision case. Whether you’re suing the other driver for damages or simply trying to get a fair offer from the auto insurance carrier, the better prepared you are, the better chance you’ll have of obtaining fair compensation.
Why Are The Details Important If I Have Car Insurance?
Many drivers make the mistake of trusting auto insurance companies to do the legwork after a car accident, assuming they’ll reach a fair conclusion and give out settlements accordingly. Unfortunately, this simply isn’t the case, and if you want to make sure your side of the story gets told, it’s up to you to tell it. Taking the time to document important details about the car accident can help your claim in a number of ways.
Clearly recording the details of what occurred (and collecting evidence such as police reports and witness statements to back up your version of events) is crucial when it comes to proving who’s at fault in your car accident. Getting everything in writing can help you later, if the other driver or insurance company tries to reframe events to shift blame.
Be sure to record as much as you can right after the incident, because these critical details fade fast after a shocking event like a car accident.
Outlines the Severity of Injuries
Even minor auto collisions can cause injuries ranging from whiplash to a herniated disc, or even traumatic brain injury. In order to receive compensation for any medical bills associated with a car accident, you’ll need to prove that:
- The injury is a direct result of the accident
- You have incurred expenses due to the injury
Remember that injuries don’t always present themselves immediately after an accident, or they don’t seem as severe. For these reasons, it’s critically important to document everything from the beginning, so if, for example, a slight neck or head pain worsens over a few days, you’ll be better able to point to the accident as the cause.
Shows the Extent of Damages
Recording property damages immediately after an accident (including photos taken at the scene, if possible) can help you:
- Prove the amount of damage if the insurance company tries to lowball an offer
- Prove that the damage was caused during the wreck and not afterwards
Be sure not only to include the damages to your own vehicle, but the other vehicle as well, to ensure you’re not blamed for additional damages later if you’re at fault.
What Details Matter Most After a Car Wreck?
One of the best things you can do for your auto accident attorney right after a car accident is collect as much evidence as you can. Even the smallest details can be enough to prove fault or change settlement amounts, so pay special attention to the following:
- Photos and Evidence From the Scene: It’s hard to keep your wits about you after a wreck, but it’s important to do so. Gather as much evidence (such as photos of damage and road conditions) at the scene as is safely possible, before it disappears.
- A Police Report: There are many reasons why you should file a police report after a car accident – one of which is because this report will provide you with an official, unbiased version of events.
- Medical Records: Hang on to any medical bills or receipts associated with the accident so you can use them to claim compensation later.
- The Other Driver’s Information: Ask the other driver and any witnesses for their contact information; be sure to get the driver’s license and insurance information as well.
- Statute of Limitations: In Louisiana, you have one year from the date of the accident in which to file a car accident lawsuit, so keep an eye on your calendar.
Looking For a Detail-Oriented Auto Accident Attorney?
Car accidents are stressful enough without having to worry about whether you’ll get a fair settlement amount. An experienced auto accident attorney like Blaine J. Barrilleaux can help you collect the details you need to effectively present your side of the story and fight for what you deserve – contact us now for a free consultation.