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4 mistakes that can cost you following a car accident

Being involved in a car accident is a serious matter, whether you are in another car, riding a bike or simply a pedestrian. In fact, car crashes often result in severe injuries and mountains of medical debt.

If you have been in a car accident, there are several mistakes you need to avoid - mistakes that can put your health and legal rights at risk.

1. I don't need to a doctor, I'm fine.

Not going to the doctor is one of the worst mistakes you can make. Even if you think you are not seriously hurt, you need to see a doctor. After all, you may have suffered an injury that you are not even aware off, especially since your adrenaline can often lessen the symptoms of some injuries following an accident.

In addition, seeking medical help is often the best way to get your injuries properly documented, which may be needed later should you file an injury claim.

2. We don't need to call the police.

This is simply wrong. Even if you believe you are not seriously injured, you need to call 911 and stay at the scene until police and ambulances arrive. Police can help determine if the at-fault driver actually has insurance or any outstanding arrest warrants. Also, a police report may come in handy later if you need to prove the other driver was at fault, whether dealing with insurance companies or during a personal injury suit. Simply put, failing to call 911 can cause many problems down the road.beeson 5.jpg

3. No need to exchange insurance information, there were no injuries and the damage was minor.

There are so many things wrong with believing this. For instance, you may not be aware of the full extent of your injuries until you see a doctor. Also, fixing even minor damage on your vehicle can often cost much more than you think, so if you don't get the other driver's insurance info, you might be the one left holding the bag.

In all cases, you need to get the at-fault driver's name, insurance company, policy number, address, license plate number and the make, model and color of his or her vehicle.

4. We don't have to get attorneys involved.

In many cases, this is simply not true. Insurance companies are in the business of making money, which means they will not necessarily be cooperative when you are seeking compensation for your injuries. Contacting an experienced car accident attorney may be the only way you get the money you need and deserve.

In addition, you should always make sure to get witness information as soon as possible following a car accident and take pictures of the scene and your injuries. You should also write down your version of the events right away, especially since memories can fade over time.

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