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Those few seconds and minutes after a car crash can be overwhelming. You may be unsure what to do first, especially if you’re injured. At RF Injury Law, our attorneys want to help you every step of the way. With that in mind, here are nine key steps you should take after a car accident in NY.
Car accidents happen every day in New York. Some are minor “fender benders”, while others are high-speed collisions or multi-vehicle pileups. The most common types of crashes are:
After a car accident in NY, you usually have two options.
Some crashes are more serious than others. However, they all have the potential to cause death or serious injury, including:
The first step after any NY car accident is checking for injuries. If anyone requires immediate medical care, call 911. Don’t attempt to move them.Then, take the following action:
Moving to a safer location makes it easier for emergency responders to reach the scene. It also helps to protect other road users.
You don’t need to report every minor collision in NY. However, you must contact the police if:
What if no one seems injured? Or what if you only have minor injuries such as bruising? Be cautious. Contact the police. Here’s why.
Even if you don’t “need” to report a crash, the police can give you an accident report. This document may help prove your insurance claim or civil lawsuit.
Next, take pictures or videos of any injuries – however minor – and property damage. This includes:
You can use this evidence to support your version of events and the losses incurred.
The more evidence available, the easier it is to prove your claim. That’s why it’s equally important to get evidence from the crash scene itself. Your insurance company and/or attorney can review this evidence and determine what happened.
Try to capture details such as:
If there’s a vehicle defect e.g. the airbag failed to deploy, take pictures of this, too.
Next, exchange details with other driver(s) involved. You should exchange:
Don’t get into details about the crash – it’s best to just stick to the facts. Otherwise, there’s a risk of saying something which may imply you caused the crash.
If you’re dealing with an uninsured driver, or they flee the scene, call police immediately.
Even if you don’t “feel” injured, visit your doctor or the ER. Attorneys can use your medical records as evidence in your case. This can make it easier to claim personal injury damages, particularly if you have more complex injuries.
And remember, some injuries are insidious and develop over time. Get cleared by a doctor after a crash.
If you’re injured due to another driver’s negligence, call a NY car accident attorney for a free case evaluation. The lawyer will:
If the insurer offers settlement, an attorney can help you decide whether to accept or reject the offer. They’ll ensure you get the most damages possible for your injuries.
Your accident report in NYC is an official document. It confirms what happened at the scene and, in many cases, describes who caused the crash.
You can get your report by contacting your local police department. Or, your attorney can get it for you.
In NY, you have 30 days to report a crash to your insurer. Otherwise, the policy may not cover your losses.
The sooner you report the crash, the better. Simply follow the steps outlined in your policy and report the incident. Only state facts! Don’t say anything which could be interpreted as admitting fault.
You must also file a report with the DMV within 10 days of the crash if:
Usually this means filing your own accident report. An attorney can help you do this if you’re unsure how to begin.
If you sustain an injury in a car accident, you need legal advice. Whether you miss work for a few days or you suffer life-changing injuries, you must be fairly compensated. And while no amount of money can make up for your injuries, you deserve to enforce your legal rights.
At RF Injury Law, our accident lawyers will work tirelessly on your behalf. We will handle every step of the process so you can focus on recovery. No matter what type of injuries you have, we’re here to help.