To start with, virtually all insurance companies say you need to report all accidents. Yet, some people think with a minor accident like a fender bender they do not need to. And, they may try to work things out amongst themselves.
Yet, this is not a good idea. Because even minor injuries can worsen over time. Plus, in some cases, injuries take days or weeks to manifest. So, you need to report all accidents, or you could regret it later.
Thus, you should take the same steps after a minor accident as you would with a major accident. Which includes letting the insurance company know about the accident. As well as, protecting your rights and wellbeing. And, if you need help through this process contact an auto accident attorney.
WHY Report a Minor Accident
First, reporting a minor accident and filing a claim is completely different. Specifically, when you report a crash you only notify your insurance an accident occurred. And, if you file a claim you want to receive coverage for injuries or damage to property. So, it is important to report a crash in a timely manner. For example, here are three reasons you should report the accident.
- Insurance Agreement – As a matter of fact, an insurance agreement is a contract between you and the insurance company. Thus, you must follow all terms contained within the agreement. So, if you don’t follow these terms, they can deny coverage of your claim.
- Vehicle Repairs – Additionally, when it comes to getting your car repaired you could file with other driver’s insurance. But they could dispute your claim causing a delay in getting your vehicle fixed. So, in cases like this, you need to use your insurance policy. Though, if you did not report the accident in a timely manner, they can deny coverage.
- Making a Claim – Even though, the other driver has insurance or says they have insurance you need to report the crash to your insurance company. As you might learn they do not have sufficient coverage, or worse a canceled policy. So, if you reported the accident to your insurance company you can file a claim. And, if you have underinsured or uninsured insurance coverage you can use this coverage.
When To Report the Accident
Next, you will not need to call your insurance company from the accident site. But you should call and let them know about the accident in a timely manner. Especially, because some policies state a specific timeframe around reporting accidents. In fact, many policies state you need to report the accident within 72 hours.
Incidentally, you may not be able to meet this timeframe. For instance, you suffered serious injuries or became incapacitated. Either way, you will still need to notify your insurance company, just contact them as soon as you can.
What to Do After a Minor Accident
Finally, you should protect yourself after an auto accident. As a matter of fact, most people don’t know what to do after an accident. Thus, these tips can help anyone involved in an auto accident.
- Stop and Check for Injuries – In all honesty, you should never leave an accident. Because they will charge you with a crime. Instead, check yourself and passengers for injuries. Then, check on the other driver if possible. But, if you have injuries call 911 and don’t move.
- Get to Safety – Next, if your car is drivable move it the side of the road out of traffic. Additionally, if you cannot drive the car, put on your hazard signals and you move to the side of the road.
- Call the Police – Always call the police when in an auto accident. They will file an accident report. More importantly, you will need this report when you file your claim.
- Exchange Information – Even though they do not have insurance, you will need their contact and vehicle details. Furthermore, you should get the contact information from any witnesses.
- Document the Details – You will need to write down the other driver’s vehicle information, time and location of the accident, and the officer’s name with a badge number. Also, try to document any details that may help when you file your claim.
- Take Pictures – Additionally, take pictures of the accident scene. Include photos of the damage to each car, the license plate of the other driver, and traffic signs.
- Report to Insurance Company – As I have said, it is important to report a crash as soon as possible. Besides, reporting the accident keeps you from breaking the terms of your policy. Not to mention, you need to let them know so you can use your MedPay coverage. Because MedPay requires you to submit all medical bills through the insurance company.
- Contact an Auto Accident Attorney – Actually, it is a good idea to consult with an attorney after an accident. Because an auto accident attorney can use their knowledge of relevant laws to help protect your rights. As well as, handling all the paperwork and filing deadlines. Thus, allowing you to focus on recovering and getting your life back to normal.
CONTACT A TAMPA AUTO ACCIDENT ATTORNEY
In short, after a car accident, you may not know your rights. Above all, don’t struggle through the process alone. Actually, our personal injury team is here to help you with any legal needs you might have regarding your accident.
Lastly, let RHINO Lawyers answer your questions and review the facts of your case with a Free Consultation. So, get started by completing the “Free Instant Case Evaluation” or by calling us any time, day or night, at 844.329.3491.