What to Do After a Minor Car Accident in Colorado
REPORTING THE CRASH AND GETTING MEDICAL TREATMENT
Every day, minor vehicle accidents occur throughout Colorado Springs. Here’s how to safeguard your health and wallet after a fender-bender, and what to do after a minor car accident in Colorado Springs. Our personal injury attorney has put together this guide for you if you find yourself in a rear end accident or other type of minor car accident.
You’ll be driving along when someone hits your automobile sooner or later. In their lifetime, the typical American may expect to be involved in three or four car accidents.
EXPERIENCED CAR ACCIDENT ATTORNEYS
The most frequent automobile collision is a fender-bender, which generally results in vehicle damage but no injuries. In the best of conditions, even small car accidents in Colorado Springs are stressful and unpleasant. Don’t allow a simple mishap to escalate into a costly, time-consuming ordeal.
Reporting the crash as soon as possible and making efforts to establish the other driver’s guilt may save you time, money, and frustration. Medical bills are unfortunate reality as a result. If the accident occurred in Colorado Springs, you have options.
Simply because it does not seem like a serious car accident, don’t let that stop you from making a free consultation with a car accident attorney. You have nothing to lose. Our personal injury lawyers go to work every day to help car accident victims. Even minor car accidents can cause traumatic brain injuries and spinal cord injuries that will require medical treatment, making an insurance claim, sometimes with your own insurance company, and holding the at fault driver responsible.
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PRIORITIZE SAFETY AT THE CAR ACCIDENT SCENE
You may be temporarily shocked by the force of an automobile collision, even if it is mild. Then your heart begins beating, and you get frustrated. After all, there’s no such thing as a good moment for a Colorado Springs car accident.
There’s a fair probability no one will be wounded if it’s only a fender-bender. That’s wonderful, yet the issue remains awkward and irritating. Staying cool and in control of your circumstance can save you from more difficulty. While it may not seem like a serious car accident from a property damage perspective, it can be very serious in terms of your injuries.
This is why hiring an experienced personal injury lawyer can help guide you along the process. It is completely free to hire the best car accident attorney in Colorado Springs! We work on a contingency fee basis so we do not get paid unless we get you a settlement.
Move Your Vehicle If it is Drivable
First and foremost, relocate your vehicle to the side of the road unless you’re already in a somewhat safe location, such as a parking lot. Put your warning lights on and come to a complete stop.
Look for the vehicle that struck you. Keep an eye on the color, make, and model of the vehicle, as well as the license plate number, in case the other motorist flees.
Even if you believe the collision was only a few dings with no casualties, call 911. Don’t let the at-fault driver persuade you out of contacting the authorities or engaging the insurance company.
Give your location to the dispatcher. Whether you’re not sure if you’ve been wounded, get medical attention. If there are any risks, such as leaking gasoline or traffic congestion, notify the dispatcher.
Do not deny medical attention on the site. You might be gravely hurt without even realizing it. Symptoms might be obscured by shock and rage. Don’t say you’re “fine” or “just rattled up” to anybody.
If you aren’t sent to the hospital right away, make an appointment for a medical assessment as soon as possible, ideally the same day. Visit your doctor or go to an emergency room or urgent care facility near you.
Keep in mind that not all injuries are visible. Whiplash and brain injuries, for example, may not exhibit symptoms for many hours or even days.
If you refuse or postpone medical care after a car accident, your claim may be dismissed. You’ll be providing the insurance company ammunition to claim that the car accident wasn’t to blame for your injuries.
It’s possible that what you say and do may be used against you.
Maintain your composure. Avoid the want to yell at the other motorist about how foolish they are to operate a vehicle. Witnesses might be swayed by abusive language or threatening actions.
If the other motorist pursues you forcefully, remain in your car with the windows rolled up, grab your phone, and begin shooting a video of the driver’s outburst. Backing away from a situation doesn’t make you a wimp; it just indicates you’re in command.
Be cautious with what you say. Do not apologize, whether you believe you are at fault or not. Make no explanations for what occurred, such as “I didn’t see you.” Making explanations or apologizing might be used as admissions against interest to establish you were at blame for the collision.
REPORT FENDER BENDERS TO PROTECT YOURSELF
Tiny car accidents usually only result in minor dents and scuffs on your vehicle. You could be inclined to keep the police and insurance companies out of it if no one was hurt. All motor vehicle accidents, including fender-benders, should be reported for a variety of reasons.
You may be concerned that your insurance prices may rise. If you’re not cautious, even a little mishap may cost you a lot of money down the line.
LOCAL LAW ENFORCEMENT SHOULD BE NOTIFIED
Minor collisions usually occur at moderate speeds and do little damage.
The following factors are responsible for the majority of minor car accidents:
- Drivers backing out of driveways or parking spots
- Roads that be slick due to weather conditions
- Drivers who are distracted
- Slow-moving traffic rear-end crashes
The car accident must be reported to the local police. Even if you think you caused thecar accident, it’s still a good idea to call the cops. Depending on the projected amount of car damage, most states require drivers to report minor auto accidents to the police.
The police may not respond to accidents without documented injuries or dangers in major metro regions. Even if it’s merely a record of your call to the police, you must have an official record of the collision.
WHY SHOULD YOU CONTACT YOUR INSURANCE COMPANY?
Even if you were at fault, you should report the collision to your insurance carrier. You’re almost certainly required to inform them.
A “notice and cooperation” provision is included in almost every vehicle insurance policy. The provision states that you agree to notify the insurance company in the event of a car accident and to help with their inquiry.
The following is an example of a notification clause:
“Insured (you) agrees to report any car accidents to the insurer (your insurance company) and to provide all information, assistance, and cooperation that the insurer reasonably requests, and agrees that in the event of a claim, the insurer and the insured will do nothing to jeopardize the insurer’s position…”
Your insurance company must be informed of the car accident. If the other vehicle driver employs a lawyer, you can guarantee they’ll call your insurance company and demand payment. If you hadn’t previously informed your insurance about the car accident, you would be at a significant disadvantage.
Furthermore, if someone from the other automobile files a lawsuit against you, your insurance company is obligated to defend you. If you breach the notification requirement, you may lose that protection.
Your medical expenditures will be compensated under your injury protection (PIP) policy in a no-fault insurance state, regardless of who caused the incident. Otherwise, you’ll file a personal injury claim with the insurance company of the at-fault motorist.
No-fault insurance does not cover car repairs. You have the option of using your collision policy, which comes with a deductible or filing a claim with the other driver’s insurance carrier.
GATHER PROOF TO BACK UP YOUR INSURANCE CLAIM
It’s up to you to persuade the other driver’s insurance company that their insured is the only cause of the collision. You’ll need proof to do so.
Following a minor car accident, you should gather the following types of evidence:
Whether the police or security staff are present, make sure you exchange information with the other motorist, including contact and insurance information. Make a list of the driver’s complete name, contact information, and the insurance company’s name and phone number.
When questioned, several states require drivers to provide their driver’s license. Allow the other motorist to record your driver’s license number on a piece of paper. It would be beneficial if you followed suit.
You’ll need the color, make, model, and year of the other vehicle. Make a note of the car’s license plate number as well as any visible damage.
PHOTOGRAPHS AND VIDEOS
Take photos and videos of the car accident site, the automobiles, and the moment of collision using your cell phone.
Photograph any beer cans or open alcohol bottles you come across.
If the police or security staff react, make sure they know about it.
If the motorist is put through a field sobriety test, picture or record it as it occurs unless the cops tell you to stop.
Even if the collision is small, witness testimony may be compelling proof of the other driver’s negligence. If someone from the other automobile comes back with inflated injury claims, witness evidence might assist your insurance company in defending you.
If the witness agrees, have them write down their name, phone number, and a short description of what they observed. Make sure the date and sign their written declaration.
When the police arrive at an car accident site, they promptly secure the area, check for casualties, and deal with traffic difficulties.
In most circumstances, a cop will examine the collision and file an official police accident report. The police report will include:
- The drivers and passengers.
- Their insurance policy numbers.
- A diagram of the scene.
- Tickets issued.
- The officer’s assessment of guilt.
Police report frequently influences insurance adjusters. Within a week or two following the car accident, contact the responding police station to seek a copy of the police report.
Many fender-benders occur in parking lots, according to the incident report. Large retail malls and shopping centers may employ security personnel who will compile an incident report. A copy of the incident report will confirm the date and place of the car accident, even if it doesn’t have the same weight as a police report.
FILE A CLAIM FOR PROPERTY DAMAGE AND BODILY INJURY
You’ll be issued a claim number when you contact the other driver’s insurance company. In the future, you will refer to that number in all conversations. An adjuster will be assigned to your claim and will work with you throughout the process.
The insurance company will require evidence that the other motorist caused the collision. The facts of the collision, as well as the documentation you’ve obtained, such as the official police report, should persuade the claims adjuster to accept your claim.
CLAIMS FOR PROPERTY DAMAGE
Even if you reside in a no-fault state, the at-fault driver’s insurance should cover your car damage.
Your property damage claim should be settled promptly by the claims adjuster unless there is a substantial disagreement about who caused the car accident.
You have the right to request the following:
- A rented car while your automobile is being repaired
- Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) components will be used for repairs.
- Reimbursement for personal belongings lost in the collision, such as food in the trunk
COMPENSATION FOR PERSONAL INJURIES
Most minor car accident cases may be handled without the help of an attorney by dealing directly with the insurance company. To have your automobile fixed, you won’t need an attorney.
Most soft-tissue injury claims may be handled for a reasonable sum straight with the insurance carrier.
Add up the cost of your medical costs and missed income if you’ve fully recovered from soft-tissue injuries like bruising tiny cuts or muscle strains. To calculate your estimated compensation, double that sum by one or two times for pain and suffering.
MINOR CAR ACCIDENTS CAUSE SERIOUS INJURIES
Minor car accidents are often low-speed, low-impact, and do not result in serious casualties. Low-impact car accidents, on the other hand, may result in significant, hard injuries. A fender accident, for example, is more likely to critically hurt older persons and individuals with pre-existing diseases.
Even if a healthy person had not been wounded in the incident, medically fragile people are entitled to full injury compensation for their medical expenditures and other losses.
Suppose you’ve suffered serious injuries in a low-impact incident, such as complex whiplash, nerve damage, or brain trauma. In that case, you’ll need the help of an expert personal injury lawyer to seek proper compensation.
Insurance companies are solely concerned with their bottom line, not with your misery. They’d rather pay for an expert to declare you can’t be injured going that slow than recompense you for a life-altering car accident.
You don’t have to make do with less. Learn what a qualified personal injury lawyer can accomplish for you.