What you do after a car crash will influence your rights and financial stability for months — if not the rest of your life. People frequently make mistakes after crashes that affect their ability to take legal action and may leave them at a disadvantage.
The three mistakes below are some of the most common that occur after a crash, so you may want to make it concerted effort to avoid them if you ever experience a collision.
1. Apologizing to the other people involved
Whether you decide to apologize to the driver that obviously just ran a red light, the police officer who comes to take your report or the insurance adjuster handling your claim, your apology could be seen as an admission of guilt. It is crucial for those negatively affected by a car crash caused by someone else to avoid making any statements that would lead others to blame them and that might diminish their compensation rights.
2. Not reporting the crash
North Carolina law requires that drivers officially report any collision that results in injury or at least $1,000 in property damage. Although the other driver may appeal to you and ask you to not call the police, failing to report the crash will make it much more difficult for you to get compensation from insurance.
3. Not seeking medical attention
You may think that you would know immediately if you had an injury after a car crash. However, many people overlook the warning signs of internal bleeding or traumatic brain injuries. You may not even have symptoms right away. Seeing a doctor quickly after a crash can help protect you from conditions that get progressively worse and will make it easier for you to file an insurance claim for those medical costs later.
Learning about and avoiding common mistakes will help you better protect yourself after a motor vehicle collision.