An accident, even a minor one, is a serious incident. Say the wrong things and you could jeopardize your ability to claim the compensation you deserve.
Always allow your accident attorney to guide you on what you should and shouldn’t say. So in that sensitive gap between the accident happening and you calling your attorney, here are the things you shouldn’t say.
Never Admit Liability for an Accident
Even a passing comment, such as apologizing because the accident was partly your fault, could find its way into court. Suppress your natural instincts to be apologetic as it could end up costing you.
No matter the situation, be aware of saying anything that could inadvertently lead to you admitting that you were in some way at fault for the accident that happened.
It’s not uncommon for vehicle accident attorneys to be completely derailed by something their clients said at the scene of the accident.
Never Agree to Not Call the Authorities
In the event of a minor accident, one party may suggest that an agreement is to be made not to call the authorities. Sometimes this is because they know they’re at fault or they don’t want the hassle.
Never provide a verbal agreement to do this. Calling 911 gives you the opportunity to obtain an official accident report, which can be used in an official capacity in court later.
Do Not Decline Medical Attention
Injuries like whiplash don’t immediately display any symptoms. A simple headache a few days later may go ignored. But those could be the signs of major damage. The most minor of accidents can be responsible for a serious injury.
You should always agree to receive basic medical attention. Again, you’ll be able to approach your accident attorney with a written report.
Do Not Talk to Any Insurance People
Your insurer or the other driver’s insurer may call you or you may call them. In fact, the official advice given out by insurers is to call your insurance provider immediately after the accident.
Ignore this advice entirely. You’re likely going to be stressed and/or emotional immediately after the accident. You’re not going to be in full control of what you’re saying.
This can easily lead to you saying the wrong thing.
Remember, your insurer is not on your side. They’re going to try to find any reason to not pay out after an accident. And they will use your words against you.
Let your attorney talk to your insurance provider on your behalf.
Don’t Write Anything Down
Most insurers will want a written record of the events at hand and they’ll want you to sign the bottom of it. Don’t do this before you talk to your attorney.
They will advise you on how you should phrase your record of the accident and when it’s safe to sign something. Again, your insurer will look for anything they can use in order to not pay you the compensation you deserve.
Keep everything unofficial until your accident attorney advises otherwise.
Last Word – Approach the Situation with a Cool Head
It can be difficult to deal with an auto accident, especially if you’ve been injured at the same time. Before you begin thinking about compensation, seek medical attention and keep your mouth shut. Get records for everything, including any medical attention you received and an accident report.
Call an attorney before your insurer and make sure that you listen to what your attorney says. Compensation has been lost because of an idle word here and an ill-considered statement there.
Have you been involved in a motor vehicle accident?