Being in a car accident will always raise plenty of questions, especially if you become seriously injured as a result. With every crash being different from the next, you are likely to have questions even if you have unfortunately been hit by a negligent driver before. To make certain you are as ready as you can be for the road ahead and the immediate aftermath of a car accident, Marciano & MacAvoy, P.C. and our car accident attorneys in Philadelphia have put together a quick FAQ list about car accidents.
If you still have more questions after reviewing our FAQ, please do not hesitate to call our firm at (215) 608-2183. Free consultations are available.
Frequently Asked Questions About Car Accidents
What information do I need to collect from the other driver after a car accident?
One of the top things on your mind after being in a car accident will likely be who is to blame for what happened. You need to be able to identify the negligent driver that hit you, which means getting their driver’s license identification number and insurance information. Thankfully, it is easier than ever to record this information due to smartphones. Ask if you can snap a picture of their license and insurance form if you do not have a pen and paper handy.
The other driver left the scene – what should I do?
Call the police immediately. It is a serious crime in Pennsylvania to commit a hit-and-run, which is defined as leaving the scene of an accident before providing identifying information. Tell the police as much information as you can about the other driver, such as color and make of car, direction they were heading, and any digits of their license plate you seem to recall. With any luck, the police will find and arrest them, allowing you to continue your car accident claim as normal.
What if the police
cannot identify the hit-and-run driver?
You are still not out of luck if a hit-and-run driver truly gets away. Insurance companies classify hit-and-run drivers in the same pool as uninsured drivers. If you have uninsured motorist (UIM) insurance, then you should be covered to the extent of that policy. If you do not have UIM coverage, we highly recommend you call your insurance provider today to inquire about adding it. A few more dollars a month could save you thousands later.
Will my insurance company help me out?
Your insurance provider might staff friendly professionals who want the best for you, but the underlying truth is they want to save money even more. Be mindful of what you say to any insurance company, even your own, as your words can be misconstrued to sound like negligence or liability. It is better to depend on a trusted, third party personal injury attorney for guidance than your insurer. We recommend that you do not even contact your insurance company. An attorney should contact the insurance company. Further, the other person’s insurance company will contact you and try and get your version of the collision and even try and record you talking. Under no circumstances should you ever let any insurance company records your words without consulting with an attorney..
How is liability proven in a car accident claim?
Your percentage of liability in a car accident determines how much compensation you can receive in the resulting claim. The lower your liability, the more you can receive. Proving your liability should be zero, or as low as possible, will depend on the evidence of your case. Eyewitness testimonies, photographs taken of the scene, police reports, medical records, and more can all be key pieces of evidence to prove your lack of liability. Our attorneys are well versed in collecting evidence and turning it into a solid case to bring to settlement negotiations or the courtroom.
Should I see a doctor after an accident? What if I don’t feel hurt?
No matter how mild or severe your injuries, you should always see a medical provider as soon as possible after being in a car accident. By doing so, you will help reduce the chances of any injury worsening. Sometimes, you might feel nothing at all initially, only to discover a serious underlying injury develops later. Seeing a doctor soon also helps keep your own liability for your injuries down.
Car Passenger Injury FAQ
I Didn’t Hit My Head, Should I Still See a Doctor?
In a car accident, passengers can still sustain a concussion even though their head never strikes anything like a hard surface. If a car stops suddenly, the abrupt change in speed can cause forward momentum to thrust a person’s brain against the inside of their skull. This type of concussion usually accompanies whiplash injuries.
Symptoms of concussion include:
- Blurry vision
- Mental fogginess
- Impaired memory
- Confusion and disorientation
Who Is Responsible for My Injury?
Under principles of negligence, when a person fails to take reasonable steps to avoid causing an accident and, as a result, causes an accident, they are liable for any foreseeable injuries that arise from the accident. Thus, the person who negligently caused the accident in which you were injured is responsible for your injuries. Sometimes, both your driver and a third party driver were negligent to a certain degree in their operation of their vehicles. In such cases, you may recover from both your driver and the third party driver to the extent their own negligence contributed to the accident.
Do I Still Need to Make A Statement for an Insurance Adjuster?
Even though you weren’t driving, if you’re planning on filing a claim with the insurance carrier of the at-fault party, you may still have to cooperate with an adjuster’s investigation, which may include providing a recorded statement. Remember, anything you say to the adjuster in a recorded statement can be used against you in court if you plan on litigating the case any further. It is always best to contact an attorney before giving a recorded oral statement or a written statement.
Does My Insurance Cover My Injury?
If you have a car insurance policy with PIP/FPB then you can recover benefits without proving the fault of either your driver or a third party driver. Additionally, if your insurance policy has uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage, you might be entitled to proceeds if the at-fault party or parties did not have a car insurance policy, or if their liability limits were less than the limits of your underinsured motorist coverage.
Remember: If you have more questions about car accidents and their resulting injury claims, call (215) 608-2183 at any time to connect with our legal team.