What To Do After A Car Accident

No one expects to be in a car accident, but it happens every day. Statistics show that nearly all of us will be in a motor vehicle accident at some time in our lives. It is important to know what to do when an auto accident happens and you or a loved one is injured. The auto accident lawyers of Maples, Nix & Diesselhorst, serving all of Oklahoma, including Tulsa, Oklahoma City and all other Oklahoma towns, have provided a list of 10 things to do if you are in a motor vehicle accident. Please contact our firm, using the form in the Contact page, to speak with a member of our legal team.

What To Do After An Auto Accident

  1. Stay calm. Do not panic. An accident can be very scary, even when there are no serious injuries. Do your best to remain calm.
  2. Check for injuries. Make sure you and your passengers have not been injured. Also, check on the driver and passengers in the other vehicles. If anyone appears to be injured, call 911 immediately. Medical care within the first moments of a serious injury can be life-saving.
  3. Call the police. In Oklahoma, it is required by law to contact the police before you can leave the scene of an accident involving injury or serious property damage. It's a mistake to just exchange names and phone numbers with the other driver and leave the scene. It is very important that the police investigate the motor vehicle accident. Also, be sure to get the name of the investigating officer(s).
  4. Identify the drivers. Exchange information with the driver of the other vehicles, including name, address, telephone number, insurance company and policy number and driver's license numbers. Make a note of the color, make and model of the other vehicles and the license plate numbers.
  5. Identify witnesses. Get the names and contact information of anyone who saw the auto accident. Other motorists, passengers or pedestrians can be critical witnesses.
  6. Do not discuss or admit liability or fault. Do not blame the other driver even if they were clearly at fault. It will likely just start an argument. But, if the other driver admits fault, make a mental note and, soon as possible, write down precisely what you remember. Only discuss the facts of the crash with the police. Leave the issue of fault for the police and the courts to determine.
  7. File an accident report. If the police do not investigate the accident, then you must file an accident report with the Department of Public Safety.
  8. Take photos. It is important to photograph, at the scene, any property damage and any injuries.
  9. Contact your insurance company. All policies require you to notify your insurance company shortly after the accident. Unnecessary delay in notice about the crash can result in a denial of your claim.
  10. PROTECT YOUR RIGHTS. Immediately consult with an experienced motor vehicle accident attorney to ensure your legal rights are protected. Deciding fault can be complicated. Insurance adjusters may call and ask you to give them a tape-recorded statement. Don't jeopardize your rights.

Contact Maples, Nix & Diesselhorst

Call an experienced attorney at Maples, Nix & Diesselhorst, serving all of Oklahoma including Oklahoma City and Tulsa, who specialize in auto accident and injury claims for advice and answers to your questions. We can help identify your next step and develop a plan for legal action if necessary. You may email us via the contact form, and someone from our office will promptly reply.