What You Can Do After an Accident in FloridaJacksonville Accident News
Picture this, you were just in a serious car accident on one of the many busy streets of Florida. Your car is destroyed, the other driver’s head is bleeding, you’re panicking, and you have no idea what to do. Our team of car accident attorneys at Sheftall Law understands how scary a car wreck can be, so we have put together a guide to help you know what to do and what not to do right after a crash.
What Can I Do After An Accident?
First and foremost, people who were in an accident tend to forget to keep calm. Being in a panicked state will alter your mind in such a way that important details of the accident can be forgotten. Before you do anything else, make sure that you keep a level head. Here are some other things that you should do right away if you are able to:
- Call The Police- Regardless of how minor an accident may be, the police need to be notified right away. Officers can help document the accident. Failing to call the police will only make a car accident injury claim harder on you because it will solely be your word against the other driver’s. If you are unable to collect information, an officer can do it for you.
- Seek Medical Attention- Even though you may not feel like you’ve been injured, being checked for injuries by emergency medical staff is extremely helpful to your case. Remember the guy whose head was bleeding? You may want to call for help for him and any other injured parties. Keep calm while on the phone with the emergency dispatcher and clearly inform them of all injuries on the scene.
- Take Photographs Of The Scene- Take photos of everything at the scene from the damaged vehicles to the surroundings. Having photographic evidence can help determine the cause of the accident and how much damage was done. Keep a disposable camera in your glove box for emergencies.
- Get Contact And Insurance Information- If the other driver isn’t too seriously injured and able to exchange information, write their name, address, phone number, and insurance information down.
- Write Down Details- While the details of the accident are still fresh in your mind, write down everything so you don’t forget. This is a great way to document the accident. Make sure that you include the time and date of the accident, the weather, landmarks, and the location of the accident.
- Get Contact Information From Witnesses- Write down names, addresses, and phone numbers of any witnesses to the accident so police may collect a statement from them later on. Passengers that were part of the accident don’t count as witnesses.
- Contact A Car Accident Attorney- The sooner you get an attorney involved in your case, the sooner you can file a claim. The state of Florida has a statute of limitations of four years from the date of the accident to get your car wreck claim filed.
What NOT To Do After An Accident
Knowing what not to do after an accident is just as important as knowing what to do. Luckily there aren’t as many to remember here. Don’t ever flee from an accident. This could count the accident as a hit and run and can lead to a warrant for your arrest. We advise to not speak to the at-fault driver’s insurance company or give a statement without consulting with a lawyer first. Remember, these guys are not going to want to pay for your damages, so they will use anything that you say to them against you in court. Yelling at the at-fault driver is also not advised. Again, anything that you say could be used against you in court. Also, don’t sign any papers or agree to any settlements without talking with your attorney first. It is your attorney’s job to ensure that you receive the maximum compensation that you deserve for your damages. And lastly, never apologize. It could be taken as guilt and assumed responsibility for something you had no fault in.
Dealing With An Impaired Driver
Drinking is an activity that many enjoy and can be a fun way to relax after a long work week until someone decides to get behind the wheel. Alcohol severely impairs one’s judgment and ability to operate a vehicle. Intoxication can also make people’s actions very unpredictable. There are many ways to spot someone who is under the influence, such as:
- Slurred speech
- Stumbling around
- Glossy or bloodshot eyes
- The smell of alcohol on their breath/clothing
It is often clear to tell if a person is intoxicated, but directly accusing them of being intoxicated could escalate the situation. Avoid further aggravating an intoxicated driver. If you’re dealing with somebody who is obviously drunk, it is best to keep your distance from them while waiting for police and emergency first responders to arrive. Educate yourself and other drivers in your family about how to detect a driver who is under the influence.
Speaking With A Florida Car Accident Attorney
In 2018, 403,626 total crashes were reported in the state of Florida, with 255,353 total injuries and 3,135 fatalities. If you or a loved one have been seriously injured in a car accident in Florida that wasn’t your fault, you have the right to demand compensation. Negligent, careless, aggressive, and reckless drivers are a serious danger to the roads in Florida today and they need to be held responsible for their actions. Our dedicated and compassionate Florida auto accident lawyers at Sheftall Law are here to answer any questions you may have about your accident and will help you determine if you have a claim. With decades of combined experience, you can be confident in our team’s ability to advocate for your needs and rights, and we will ensure that you get the maximum compensation that you deserve. Call us today at (904)-638-7712 or visit sheftalllaw.com to schedule your free, no-obligation, and confidential consultation.