What to Do After an Accident
How To Handle Personal Injury Claims in Colorado
Counsel from Colorado Springs Personal Injury Attorneys
The time immediately following a
car accident can be incredibly stressful. You may be struggling with medical bills,
lost income, and the pain and suffering caused by the accident. The actions
you take at this stage in your case will largely determine the outcome
of the situation and whether or not you are able to recover the financial
compensation you deserve. Therefore, it is critical that you retain the
services of a
Colorado Springs personal injury lawyer from Clawson & Clawson, LLP.
What to Do After an Accident
Fighting for the rights of accident victims is what we do. The personal
injury lawyers at Clawson & Clawson, LLP have over 120 years of collective
experience and know what steps are crucial after an accident. Several
of these steps are most effective in the time directly after an accident,
such as collecting witness information, but others, such as keeping a
detailed journal, can and should be a continuous process. It is never
too late to take steps to support your claim and any information you collect
can be tremendously helpful.
1. Identify and Treat Medical Injuries
Immediately after an accident, it is vital to check on the health of each
person involved in the collision. Before moving on, call medical assistance
for anyone who has been injured. Collecting evidence for your case begins
now. Do not assume that you are uninjured because you are currently unaware
of symptoms. Experiencing an accident can increase a person’s adrenaline
and cause them to miss minor to moderate injuries. Additionally, certain
injuries may not present symptoms for days or weeks after an accident.
Even if you have suffered no apparent injuries, it is vital to schedule
a medical examination as soon as possible. Be sure to keep a file documenting
all injuries and medical treatments you receive.
2. Inform the Police
Whenever you have experienced an accident, even a minor collision, you
must inform the police and stay at the scene until law enforcement arrives.
Police will take the statements of the involved parties and file a report
which you can use as evidence in your case or if your claim goes to court.
While you should avoid self-incrimination, when talking to the police,
answer honestly about the events which occurred. If you do not know a
piece of information, you can say so. Be sure to record the police report
number as well as the information for responding officers.
3. Exchange Information with the Other Driver(s)
After a collision, you will want to gather information from the other drivers
involved in the accident as well as records about the scene of the collision
itself. Along with the contact and insurance information of the other
driver, take down the names and information of any passengers who were
involved. Identify any witnesses and be sure to take down their statements
and information as well. Any evidence you have to support your case can
go a long way in court. When talking to other drivers or the police, do
not incriminate yourself. A statement as simple as saying that you are
sorry may be used as evidence of guilt by the other party.
4. Collect Evidence from the Scene of the Accident
In addition to witness statements, be sure to collect and document evidence
from the scene of the accident including any injuries you sustained as
well as damage to personal property. Take pictures of each vehicle involved
in the accident, highlighting any damaged areas. Pictures of the surrounding
area can also be helpful. The time following the accident will be the
most important for collecting information, but you can always revisit
the scene of a crash to collect data.
5. Keep Ongoing Records
As soon as possible after your car accident,
slip and fall, or another type of accident, sit down and write down your recollection
of the incident while it is fresh in your memory. You should also keep
daily notes about how your pain and other symptoms are affecting your
ability to go about your normal routine and to enjoy life. In addition,
you should keep any records of the expenses that you incurred as a result
of the accident, such as bills for medical treatment, medication and equipment,
travel expenses, and even the wages you are losing while you miss work.
It must be emphasized that you cannot collect too much evidence. Each
piece of the puzzle that you can provide can only serve to help your claim.
This type of evidence can be invaluable in compelling the insurance company
to pay on your accident claim, as well as if the case goes to a full jury trial.
6. Contact Your Insurance Agency
While you must contact your insurance company after an accident, you do
not have to deal with them alone. You have every right to settle your
accident claim by working directly with the insurance company, but it
may not be in your best interest to do so. Remember, insurance is a billion-dollar
industry and the company responsible for paying on your claim has vast
resources at its disposal for defending its bottom line. They have adjusters,
investigators, claims representatives, and even lawyers ready to protect
their interests. The insurance company is in business to make money and
they do that by collecting premiums, not by paying money to people in
your situation – and, in many cases, through
bad faith practices. Why face such overwhelming odds alone? Level the playing field by hiring
an injury attorney from our firm to fight for you.
Hire a Personal Injury Attorney Now
Contact us at Clawson & Clawson, LLP for skilled legal representation
and knowledgeable guidance from a team that has been helping Coloradoans
for a combined 120 years. We represent clients in Colorado Springs,
Parker, and Denver.
Our accolades include membership in the prestigious Multi-Million Dollar Advocates Forum®,
a group comprised of less than 1% of attorneys across the country. Don't
worry about up-front fees; we work on a contingency fee basis, so you
will not have to pay us anything unless we win your case.