What is the most important thing to do after an auto accident?

Frustrated woman after a car accident

Last Updated on January 13, 2024

It is very important to get the other drivers information!

Auto accident insurance

You will need to get their name, address, phone number, drivers license number, and insurance information.You can use your phone to take a picture of their license and insurance card.
While your phone is out take photos of the accident scene and damage to your car. Make sure to include the larger scene and any other cars involved. Store these photos carefully as they will be used to substantiate fact from fiction in the future.

You’ll want to get any contact information from witnesses who saw the auto accident. What the other driver says to you at the scene, may be very different from what they tell their insurance company. They may be apologetic and kind and then turn around and blame your or change their story later. Witnesses make all the difference when the other driver is not being truthful about what happened.

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Get medical treatment right away

Medical treatment after an auto accident

A full recovery after an accident involving an injury is very important. Prompt and competent care is essential to a complete recovery. Do not delay treatment as this may prolong your injuries or make recovery slower. Waiting more than a week to get treatment not only slows down your recovery, but insurance companies will say that if you were really hurt you would’ve seen a provider immediately.

Be sure to let your providers know all of your injuries including: tingling in arms or legs, neck pain, anxiety you are having driving or being in a car, bad dreams about the accident, foggy thought process or memory problems. All of these are common post accident symptoms and you’ll want medical notes that prove they started after the accident.

Contact your insurance company

Under Oregon law, the insurance that covers the car you were injured in is required to pay all of your medical bills for 2 years or $15,000 worth of medical treatment — whichever happens first. Medical bills and wage loss are paid via the Personal Injury Protection (PIP), which is a part of every car insurance policy sold in the state of Oregon.
To often injured people delay or not get medical treatment because they don’t have health insurance and they don’t know about PIP. If you have doubts or concerns about your medical bills will be paid, ask your provider or talk to an attorney.
Be very careful talking with the other driver’s insurance company.
While they do need basic information to open a claim and take care of the damage done to your car, they are also looking for information they can use against you. One common problem is that injured people giving more information than they need to. Keep your answers short and to the point. In a perfect world, you would talk with an attorney before giving a recorded statement.

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The adjuster works for the insurance company

Auto accident

Remember, the adjuster works for the insurance company. Their primary job is to save the insurance company money. They are highly trained to do their job and know just which questions to ask and how to record the answers. Most people injuried in accidents are no trained to answer these questions. To protect yourself from make sure that you speak with an attorney if you’re feeling threatened or uncomfortable talking with the claims adjuster.

How to deal with insurance adjusters

You may not need an attorney to represent you, but it’s good to talk with one to better protect yourself. Talking to an attorney does not obligate you in any way to hire them, and it won’t cost you any money. Most attorneys will listen and advise you for free. If they won’t then call another with a good reputation.