Recently, Maryland State Police located and arrested a driver who was suspected of a hit-and-run accident on Interstate 95 in Hartford County. As much as drivers in the DMV dislike construction crews and excessive traffic, police report this is exactly the reason they were able to apprehend the man. The police received a description of the suspect’s vehicle at the scene of the accident from the driver of the second vehicle in the collision. Both the driver and the passenger of that vehicle were transported to Johns Hopkins Bayview Hospital. Once arrested, the 25-year-old would-be escape artist was cited for reckless driving, fleeing the scene, and driving on a suspended license. Although authorities were able to detain the suspect in this case, not all victims of accidents are so lucky. Here are some tips for protecting your interests after you have been in an accident.
Get the Other Driver’s Information
This is possibly the most important step on your route to recovery. You need to know the other driver’s name and insurance information in order to make a claim against them for personal injury or property damage to your car. If you are unable to get the information because you are being taken to a hospital, at least do as the drivers above did and note the license plate or vehicle description. Generally, an officer will arrive and collect everyone’s information to compile a police report, however, it is usually in your best interest to note the license plate just in case.
If you or your passenger is able to take photos of your car or the scene of the accident, this will be an immense help to your attorney. Luckily with the advent of smart phones, this can be done pretty quickly. If no one is able to take photos at the time, be sure that you snap a few pictures of your car before it is repaired. Documenting your injuries with a camera is not a bad idea either. All of these photos will help give your attorney an accurate picture of what happened and assist them with the negotiation process with the insurance company.
One of the critical pieces of information your attorney will need to know is whether you have had a prior injury. This does not make or break your case. Even if you have been injured in the past, had a surgery, or underwent physical therapy, you will still likely have a claim if the accident worsened your injuries. This is sometimes known as the “eggshell” claim because your injury might have even been as fragile as an eggshell. Trying to hide information about previous injuries probably won’t work and certainly won’t help your case. Honesty is the best policy.
Do Your Research
There are numerous articles on this site, and others about steps you can take following an accident to minimize your own losses, whether they are related to personal injuries, property damage, lost wages at work, or diminished value. Do your homework and make sure you are protecting your rights.
Consult a Professional
If you have a toothache, you wouldn't try to pull your own tooth. It's not the 1960's anymore. Similarly, if you need medical attention, you should seek out a doctor. Our team of professional attorneys are knowledgeable and experienced and are standing by to help assist you with your complicated legal or financial problem. We put our clients interests first and foremost in any case we handle. Don’t let the insurance companies take you for a ride. Let our team represent you and fight for the compensation you are entitled to.