For the year 2016, Transport Canada reported 7.1 fatalities and 392.4 injuries for every 100,000 citizens in Alberta due to a motor vehicle accident. As Sherwood Park personal injury lawyers, we know that a traffic accident will happen to most of us at some point in our lives and it’s important to know exactly what to do when it happens.
Your First Priority
The health and safety of anyone involved in the accident is the number one priority. If you have been injured, you will want to seek medical attention immediately. Follow all the advice of your doctor.
Report the Accident
If your vehicle has been involved in any collision, it must be reported. This should be reported to the police and your insurance company. The police will advise you if you need to remain at the scene until they get there. Even though a police report isn’t always required in every accident, it can be a valuable piece of evidence and give you important information.
When it comes to insurance companies, be aware that you are not required to speak to any other party’s insurance company but you should cooperate with your own with regard to the facts only. Keeping your conversations to the facts leaves it less likely that your insurance company can find ways to deny your coverage.
Even if the collision was your fault, you will not want to admit this to the police or the other driver. Remain calm and don’t engage in any arguments with the other drivers involved. Don’t downplay any possible injuries. The best course of action is to keep communication to the bare minimum.
You will want to get as much information as possible while you are at the scene of the accident. Get names, addresses, and telephone numbers of any other parties involved as well as witnesses to the accident. Make sure to also get license tag numbers and the make and model of each car.
You should take photos of the accident scene and the position of all the vehicles involved. Make note of:
● The date, time, and location
● The direction that the vehicles were traveling
● Weather and road conditions
● The approximate speed each vehicle may have been going
● Anything you observe that may be relevant
Do Not Accept a Quick Insurance Settlement
It is important when dealing with insurance companies to not take quick settlements as compensation for injuries. Until you know what your long-term prognosis is and the extent of medical costs and wage loss, there is no way for an insurance company to be able to offer you a fair settlement quickly. This is one way that insurance companies use in order to not pay fair settlements to their insured.
Get Legal Advice
Before negotiating any settlement with your insurance company, you should get legal advice. Call the Sherwood Park injury lawyers at BPCAB Personal Injury Lawyer for a free consultation in order to understand your legal rights after a motor vehicle accident.