9 Legal Tips for Car Enthusiasts on Protecting Their Rights After a Car Accident

Car accidents are sometimes unavoidable. When they do happen, the consequences can be devastating. This is especially true for car enthusiasts, because crashes nearly always result in cars being wrecked, or at least seriously damaged. Sometimes, they result in injuries and even fatalities.

If you are somebody who considers themselves a car enthusiast and has been involved in an accident caused by another person’s negligence, then action needs to be taken. This post will offer nine legal tips for protecting your rights after an accident takes place.

Taking Evidence

The first step in protecting your rights is to take evidence, ideally from the scene of the crash. If you can, then take a photograph or video of your car, the guilty driver’s car, and any injuries that you have sustained. Make sure to get the other driver’s insurance information, too. If the other driver tries to get away without giving you their information, take their number plate down, and try to get a picture of them. It’s sadly not uncommon for people to try and get away after causing car accidents. When people do this it is a criminal offense and classified as a ‘hit and run’ accident.

Medical Certificate

Most car accidents result in some kind of injury, mentally and physically. Usually, financial settlements are paid to the victims of car accidents so that they can get medical treatment and recover from their injuries. If you have been injured, then the best way to prove this to a lawyer is to get a medical certificate. You can do this by reaching out to your physician or by asking for a written note from the doctor that you see at ER if you go to ER. Make sure to photograph your injuries, too.

Photographing Car

After the accident has taken place, and when you are back at home, make sure that you photograph your car and record any damages. The reason that you need to do this is that a lot of people do not make claims immediately. In most states, there is a three-year statute of limitations on car accidents. If after an accident you pay for it to be repaired and then decide to make a claim a year or so after, you need to have evidence that your car was damaged, so you can be compensated for it.

Gathering Witnesses

Ideally, you should gather witnesses to help support your case. Having witnesses can make getting paid compensation much easier, especially if you did not manage to get a photo or video evidence from the scene. The witnesses you gather should preferably be passers-by, as well as people that were in the car with you. Make sure that any witnesses you provide who were passengers in your car give unbiased and truthful accounts. It’s common for loved ones to exaggerate their stories to support their loved ones after they have been involved in accidents.

Hiring Lawyer

You will need to hire a lawyer, too. In the words of one auto accident attorney in Illinois, it will be very difficult for you to make a claim for compensation directly to an insurance company. Insurance companies appoint adjusters, who are individuals paid to reduce the settlement amounts of claims made to them. Only trained lawyers have the skills necessary to deal with such individuals. Make sure that the lawyer you hire is experienced and qualified. You can check a lawyer’s level of experience by reading their reviews and seeing what their case success rate is (this information is usually published on law firms’ websites).

Truthful Account

When you hire a lawyer, they will ask you to give them an account of what happened, or in other words, your version of events. When you give your account it needs to be as accurate, unbiased, and honest as possible. It’s only natural for you to want to exaggerate the extent of your injuries and make yourself seem like a bigger victim than you perhaps were but doing this could just lead to your case being thrown out or dismissed. If it turns out that you have lied in any way, your lawyer will no longer want to represent you, and the insurance company will refuse to pay compensation to you.

Remain Patient

Patience is important. Your case could go on for many years, depending on how much compensation you are claiming. It’s very rare for compensation claims to be paid in a matter of weeks or months. Sometimes, they take a very long time. If you are not a patient person, then you need to learn to become one. Not being patient could lead to you disturbing and annoying your lawyer. Your lawyer will not want to represent you if you pester them, sending them lots of emails or calling them all of the time.

Have Confidence

In some cases, personal injury claims are taken to court. More often than not, this occurs when a guilty driver is not insured and therefore has no insurance company to pay compensation out on their behalf. When a driver is uninsured a civil lawsuit is the only option. If you do need to take the individual responsible for injuring you and damaging your car to court, then you need to have confidence. It’s not easy standing up in court and giving evidence, but it may be necessary. Your lawyer will talk you through what you need to do and coach you in testifying.

Criminal Action

Finally, consider criminal action. If you believe that the person who crashed into you was under the influence of drugs or alcohol, or was driving very dangerously, then you could have them arrested. If you suspect such a thing, it’s usually best to call the police at the scene of the accident. If you wait until afterward then there is no way for you to prove that they were on drugs or drunk. If they were driving recklessly, call the police as well.

Car accidents can lead to people being seriously injured, and their cars being damaged. If you have been involved in one, then take action. Contacting a lawyer (and following the other steps outlined here) is how you can protect your rights and get the justice that you deserve.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of SpeedwayMedia.com

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