On behalf of Jeff Antin of Antin, Ehrlich & Epstein, LLP, Attorneys at Law posted in Accidents on Friday, September 7, 2012.
In the heat of the moment it can be very difficult to take the best course of action after getting into a car accident, especially on the busy streets of New York City. Motor vehicle accidents are always a surprise, and even if no one is harmed, knowing what to do in order to minimize your personal injuries and the personal injuries of other people involved in the accident. If you’re involved in a car accident in New York City, here are the key steps to remember.
The first step is to be prepared for a car accident, and this happens before you drive anywhere. All New York City drivers should make sure that their insurance is updated and that they have all the relevant documentation in their glove box. Also, keep a pen and notepad on hand in order to get the name, address, phone number, insurance information and license plate number from the other driver. Without these things, you’ll risk missing out on getting just compensation for the accident.
No matter what kind of motor vehicle accident it is, the most important thing is to get out of harm’s way. Find a safe place, and if possible get your vehicle out of the way of any oncoming traffic. Get as far away from traffic as possible when you exchange information with the other driver. Call the authorities, and if anyone may be injured, call 911 immediately. Filing a police report – whether with an officer at the scene, at a police station, or through an online form after the fact – is a good idea to help guide the claims process.
Be careful with what you say after the accident. Never tell the police or the other driver it was your fault, just stick to the facts when reviewing how the accident happened. Make sure you obtain visual proof after any kind of motor vehicle accident, even if the damage seems minimal. Carry some sort of camera with you when you drive, even if it’s the camera on your phone. Should you seek a personal injury or wrongful death settlement, taking time-stamped pictures of the damage to both vehicles provides the best evidence. Document any injuries as well; if you were the one injured in the accident, it’s possible you might be due an injury settlement as compensation.
Lastly, consulting with a New York City personal injury attorney can help you determine whether or not you should pursue additional compensation. Our attorneys in NYC have extensive experience in both personal injury and wrongful death cases relating to car accidents, so contact our offices if you think you have a case. If you’ve taken the steps outlined above, the odds that we can win a large personal injury settlement will be in your favor.