Why you must file a car accident report after a crash

Many people don’t know what to do after they are involved in an auto accident. It isn’t something that you think about often, so you may not know what to do or how to handle the situation. If the accident seems to be minor, you might not even consider filing a car accident report. However, injuries and damages to vehicles may not be evident at the time of the accident but can become more noticeable over time. That’s why Vancouver drivers should file a report just in case they need car accident lawyers in the future.

Steps to Take After a Car Accident

No one ever knows how they’ll react to an accident. The best thing you can do is to calm down as much as possible and keep a cool head. The more details you can remember and document about the accident, such as the location of the vehicles in the street, obvious damage to both vehicles and the demeanor of the other driver and their passengers could play an important role if you need to call on a car accident lawyer in Vancouver. Here are some things to do after an accident:

  • Check everyone in both vehicles to determine if anyone is injured. If medical assistance is required or there is considerable damage to one or more vehicles, you should call 911.
  • If possible, move all vehicles involved to a safe location on the side of the road to prevent additional accidents.
  • To avoid potential legal issues later, don’t assume or say you are responsible for the accident.
  • Use a camera or write notes to document any injuries and vehicle damages for insurance purposes. This information, including a car accident report, could also be useful to an auto accident attorney in Vancouver if you should need to file a lawsuit.
  • Exchange your insurance information with the other driver, in addition to vehicle models, license plate numbers, addresses, names, telephone numbers and driver licenses.
  • Report the accident to your insurance company regardless of whose fault it may be. Make a point of reporting everything to your insurer, so there are no complications later.

Filing a car accident report

Ideally, car accident reports should be filed with a police officer on the scene of an accident. However, in Washington, reports can be filed within four days of an accident.  

The officer on the scene will take down notes about the accident and interview you, the other vehicle driver and any possible witnesses to the accident to obtain as much information as possible. Officers are very observant and trained to record the details of an accident, which may work in your favor if you end up going to court. Be sure to always ask for a copy of the report for your records.

Working With a Personal Injury Attorney

If you’ve been injured in an accident or think you may have a personal injury case, it may be a smart idea to enlist the services of car accident lawyers in Vancouver. Contact Philbrook Law Office for legal assistance and recommendations if you feel you may be entitled to vehicle damages, lost wages or medical expenses due to an accident.

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