Steps to Take After a Car Accident in Riverdale
If you are in an automobile crash, your mind will probably race to think of what you are supposed to do, especially if the collision is not your fault, and you want to gather evidence for an insurance claim or lawsuit. Fortunately, there are several steps to take after a car accident in Riverdale.
The most important of these steps is to make sure your injuries are treated by a medical professional. Once you have obtained medical treatment, you should then schedule a consultation with a trusted attorney for help with holding the at-fault party liable for your accident.
Motorists’ Duty Under Georgia Law
Georgia Code § 40-6-273 states that motorists who are in an automobile accident in which someone is injured or killed, with property damage exceeding $500, must immediately contact the nearest police department within city limits or the closest sheriff’s office or state patrol if outside city limits. This should be done after checking all drivers and passengers for injuries and trying to stop any bleeding. If possible, seriously injured persons should not be moved unless they are in danger on the roadway.
Additional Steps to Take After a Car Accident
Along with police, an ambulance should be summoned if anyone involved in the accident loses consciousness or complains of pain. Often, symptoms do not surface right away, so it is better to get medical help immediately. Additionally:
- If the damaged vehicles are still in the middle of the road and operable, move them and all conscious passengers out of danger from oncoming traffic
- Turn off cars’ engines, turn on the hazard lights, light road flares, and wait for police and medical help
- Ask the other driver for contact information, including driver’s license, insurance information, and auto registration; provide the same to the other driver
- Do not admit fault or accuse the other driver; the police will compile a report used by the insurance company, and the police may issue citations to the driver in the wrong
- Use a cell phone to take pictures of the accident, including damage to the autos and injuries to passengers and drivers
- Speak to witnesses and ask them for contact information which could be used in a future lawsuit
- Notify the insurance company to begin a claim
- Contact an attorney to discuss filing a claim against the other driver who may have negligently caused the accident
What is Negligence and Why is it Important in a Car Accident Claim?
Negligence occurs when a person has a duty to another and does not uphold that duty, an accident happens, and the careless act or omission causes the accident and injuries. All motorists have a responsibility to obey traffic laws, so others sharing the road are safe. For example, if a motorist drives while intoxicated, runs a red light, and smashes into another motorist, injured in the crash, the drunk driver will most likely be held accountable for the injured party’s losses. A car accident attorney could explain the steps to take to get compensation for injured victims.
Contributory Negligence and Modified Comparative Fault
Under Georgia Code § 51-12-33, the courts will determine how much fault the plaintiff contributed to the accident and reduce the damage award accordingly. Modified comparative fault precludes plaintiffs from recovering any compensation if they are 50 percent or more responsible for the accident.
Schedule a Consultation Today to Learn More
After an automobile accident, you should be sure to follow the vital steps to take after a car accident in Riverdale to ensure you and your passengers are safe while waiting for help. You should also collect the information your insurance company or personal injury attorney will need to get you compensation from the responsible parties. Our professional car accident lawyers could work diligently to get you the most favorable outcome. Call today for your free consultation.