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Steps to Take Immediately After a Car Accident in Maryland

           Call 911: Maintain your composure and call 911. Once the police arrive, they will want to attend to any emergencies, and will generally speak to each party involved to gather all the necessary information to generate a police report,   including names, addresses, vehicles involved, insurance information and any independent witnesses. They will also facilitate an exchange of information between the involved parties. A police report may also include the officer’s determination of who is at fault for the accident, which can help the involved insurance companies determine who should accept liability. Having a police report is often helpful if there are conflicting accounts of how the accident occurred and the details from the involved parties are not enough to determine who is at fault.

            Seek Medical Care: When contacting the police, be sure to indicate if you are injured and require medical assistance. This is not the time to be bashful. Remember if you decline medical care, an ambulance will not be dispatched.  Remember that although you may not feel pain or discomfort at the time of the accident, you may come to experience it later. Generally, immediate pain is a clear indicator for you to seek medical attention. Do not minimize your health needs.

            Photograph the Scene: While you are waiting for the police to arrive, it is helpful to take pictures of the other parties’ automobile insurance card, driver’s license, vehicle damage, license plates of the vehicles involved and the accident scene surroundings, if you can. Try to capture what evidence you can.

            Consult with a Lawyer: It cannot hurt to have a consultation with an attorney, prior to reporting the claim to any involved insurance companies. Providing comprehensive information to an attorney will enable them to offer tailored advice and support for your situation. Many injury law practices, including our own, offer free consultations to accident victims. There is no downside to getting a free legal consultation regarding your rights or appropriate courses of action. Further, there is no obligation on your part to take legal action. Consider your options.

            Contact Your Insurance Company: Once things have settled, you may need report the accident to your auto insurance provider. This process may involve providing the details of the accident, as well as any involved parties, witnesses or damages alleged. Try to get your notes together and facts organized so that you can present a clear communication of this information to your insurance company. If you have hired an attorney to represent you, they will likely be willing to report the claim on your behalf, or assist you in the process.

            If you feel you have been treated unfairly after an accident or simply require guidance about what you should or should not do, please don’t hesitate to reach out to Bob Katz Law to schedule a free consultation.

 By Nicole Warner, April 15, 2024

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