What to Do After Causing an At-Fault Accident

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April 10, 2019
Edward Smith

What to Do After Causing an At-Fault Accident

Many people are injured or killed in car accidents every day throughout California. These accidents can take a significant toll, physically, emotionally and financially on the victims and their family. But what happens if you’ve caused the crash? Whether the wreck was 100-percent your fault or not, knowing that you’re the cause of the collision can be stressful. How you handle yourself minutes after an at-fault accident is essential. Below are a few tips on what you should and shouldn’t do.

Remain Calm

If you think you have just caused an accident, the first thing you should do is stay calm. It may be hard to do, but it’s essential to have a clear head to process what just happened.

Don’t Leave the Scene of the Accident

Not only is it wrong, but it is also illegal to leave the scene of an accident. Stay put until help arrives.

Check on the Safety of Everyone Involved

Check to see if everyone in your car is okay. Check the other party involved in the accident as well. Call 911 immediately if someone is injured.

Don’t be Aggressive

Be polite and courteous. Don’t panic or start a fight. Be as even-toned as possible.

Don’t Admit Fault

You may feel nervous and automatically want to apologize to the other party but make sure that you don’t admit fault or discuss the details of how the car accident happened. Instead, just ask if everyone is okay and exchange contact information.

Be Honest with the Police

When the police arrive, comply with their requests. Be honest and tell them clearly what you think happened.

Take Photos of the Accident Scene

Use your cell phone to take photos of the accident. This includes damages to not only your vehicle but all vehicles involved. You should take pictures of the scene around the car crash such as any debris or damage to fences or trees.

Take photos of all elements at the scene that you believe may have contributed to your accident like an object blocking your view or a broken traffic light.

Call Your Insurance Company

It may be unpleasant to notify your insurance company about the at-fault accident knowing that your insurance rate will likely increase, but it is necessary.

Call an Experienced Car Accident Lawyer

Before making an official statement to your insurance company, you may want to call and speak to an experienced lawyer. If you are concerned about whether your policy may cover certain damages, it is a good idea to meet with an attorney to go over your options. California follows a comparative fault law, meaning that it dictates that more than one party can be held liable for the accident. An experienced car accident attorney can get evidence that may help demonstrate that the other party played a role in causing the crash as well. This can help lessen the compensation required on your behalf.

Watch YouTube Video: Contacting an Attorney Following an Auto Accident. The video below provides additional details on why it’s important to contact an auto accident attorney after being involved in a car accident.

Live Oak Car Accident Lawyer

I’m Ed Smith, a Live Oak car accident lawyer. Being involved in an auto accident can be stressful but knowing that you may have caused the collision can be overwhelming. If you or a family member has been injured in an at-fault accident, you may need the help of an experienced car accident attorney. Call me today for free and friendly legal advice at (530) 392-9400 or (800) 404-5400.

I am a member of the National Association of Distinguished Counsel and the Million Dollar Forum.

You can learn more about my law firm at the following sites:

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