Being in a car accident is one of life’s unfortunate downsides we all hope never to experience. Depending on the nature of the accident, there can be a lot of emotional and physical pain, not to mention a disruption to life’s activities and the expenses of repairing a vehicle.
But if you have been involved in an accident and you were not at fault it is important to know that there are legal options at your disposal. However, before considering your legal options, there are a few things you should do at the scene if you are physically able to do so.
Once you have followed these steps you can then go on to consider the best lawyers for personal injury claims Canberra has:
1. Stop your car
If you have been involved in an accident then you must immediately stop your vehicle.
2. Check if anyone is injured
If you yourself have not been injured then you can then determine if any of your passengers or anyone in the other vehicle/s is injured. If so, you must then call emergency services. An ambulance will come to deal with any injuries, but the police will only come if there are serious injuries or if any vehicles require towing.
3. Exchange your details
You and the other driver/s involved must exchange details, including your names, addresses and vehicle registration numbers. If you are not the vehicle’s owner, you must provide the details of its owner. Remember to check if the other driver is ensured and exchange insurance details, too.
4. Don’t admit liability
Or enter any negotiations without speaking with your lawyer or insurance provider. Do not say you were at fault if you don’t believe you are as this could come back to bite you when making a personal injury claim against the other driver.
5. Assess the damage
You must then assess the vehicle, checking if there is any damage and if the vehicle is safe to drive. It could be that the vehicle has been damaged so much to be considered a write off, in which case it is likely the vehicle will have to be towed.
Other things you should remember to do
There are numerous other things you can do to ensure you have a stronger case in the event of a personal injury/vehicle compensation claim, including:
- Take photos of the accident to support any claims that the other driver was at fault and caused the vehicle damage/any injuries you may have sustained, remembering not to endanger yourself on the road when doing so;
- Identify any witnesses and take their contact details as they might be able to help you with your case;
- Contact your insurance company as there will be steps to take in order to lodge a claim. You want this advice as soon as possible, so be sure to contact them in the accident’s near-aftermath.
- Report the incident to the police within 24 hours (unless the police came to the scene);
- You will need to determine who is at fault and they are the ones who are responsible for the damage to the other vehicle, as well as loss of personal belongings, replacement motor vehicles etc.
Enlist legal advice if necessary
It can be difficult to determine who is at fault in a motor accident. This is especially so if the other driver – who you believe to be at fault – is incredibly stubborn and won’t admit any wrongdoing.
Therefore, it may be imperative to enlist the services of reputable professional lawyers who can help you determine the other driver’s fault.