Next Time


Again you may not have another accident for many years, but in case you do you should be prepared. Here is a guide just in case:


Immediately Following any Accident, the First Things You Should Do:


1. Call the police. Even if it only seems to be a minor accident and no
     one appears injured, it's important to have a police report to prove
     the accident happened.


    Without a police report, you will not be protected if others involved
     in the accident later claim you caused injuries to them. They could
     even say you left the scene, and you could be charged with "hit-and-run". 


2. Write down the make, model, color, and license plate numbers of other
     cars involved in the accident.

     Note basic physical descriptions of other drivers as well. It is important to
     do this is soon as possible, because another driver might pull over as if to
     stop but then drive off before you have a chance to exchange information
     with him/her. 


    Having a disposable camera in your vehicle, or even your cell phone can
     assist with this.


3. Exchange insurance information with the other driver(s) involved in the


   Make sure you get the name of their insurance company, their insurance
    policy number, and their agent's name and phone number. Get the other
    drivers' full names, current addresses, phone numbers, and driver's
    license numbers. 


4. Don't say anything to the other driver(s) or witnesses about how the
     accident happened.


   Be sure you don't say that you were or might have been at fault. The police,
    the insurance companies, and, possibly, a court of law will determine that.
    Remember, anything you say at the time of the accident may be used against
    you later. 


5. Ask any witnesses who saw the accident or its aftermath for their name, 
     address, and phone number.


6. If the other driver(s) or witnesses comment about the accident, write down
     what they said as soon as possible, so you don't forget.


   Also pay attention to the demeanor/behavior of other drivers involved. Were
    they talking on a cell phone when the accident occurred? Do they seem tired
    or under the influence of alcohol or some other substance? 


7. Get the name, badge number, and phone number of the police officer(s)
     who responded to the accident.


   Ask them for an accident report number, so you can get the police report
    once it's completed.


8. Pay attention to the details of the scene of the accident, including damages
     to your car and other vehicles. 


   You may want to take pictures of the site where the accident occurred that
    will include important evidence, such as a faulty traffic light.


9. Get treatment for your injuries right away.

     They may seem minor at the time of the accident but feel much worse the
     next day. If you don't get treatment immediately, there will not be a medical
     record tying your injuries to the accident, and the insurance company may 
     argue that your injuries or symptoms were not caused by the accident. Keep
     copies of all bills/expenses related to any medical treatment you receive.


   Be sure to write down the names and phone numbers of any doctors you go
    to and the dates you saw them.


10. As soon as possible, contact your preferred repair facility and tell them you
       have had an accident.


      Generally while you are waiting for the police at the accident site, it is a good
       time to contact the repair facility. They can assist you with towing and other

      next steps that will be necessary such as calling your insurance company

      to notify them of the accident.


     Your policy may state that you have to do this within a certain period of time,

     but it is best to call your repair facility first.

      If you believe another driver was at fault, it is best to call your repair facility

     since the other insurer may have a history that is not in your best interest.

     Your repair facility can assist you in contacting their insurer as well to make

     a claim.


     Some companies may require you to fill out certain forms to make your claim

     official. Be sure to ask for your claim number. If you do not have the other

     driver's insurance information, you should be able to get it off of the police