Why call an attorney to the scene of your first car accident?
When a driver experiences his or her first car accident, no matter how old the driver is or how long he or she has been driving, it is very disorienting. Whether the collision is a relatively simple fender bender or a more serious injury accident, these are often lengthy, costly matters to resolve.
Additionally, the actions that each driver takes in the aftermath of the accident may permanently alter his or her options moving forward. Many drivers do not realize how dangerous — even illegal — it is to leave the scene of an accident in certain circumstances, or may not realize that a simple apology can carry heavy legal consequences.
For most drivers, their first car accident is the easiest one to mishandle, often leading to unnecessary expenses or missed opportunities for fair compensation. If you are in a serious accident, especially one involving a commercial vehicle, seek legal advice in order to best protect your interests. In fact, sometimes it may help to have a local personal injury attorney to come to the scene of your accident.
Protecting you from your own mistakes
An attorney’s job is to understand the law and help you protect yourself with it. Sometimes, the attorney protects you from unfair claims by another party, or possibly from accepting a settlement offer that does not reflect the full scope of your losses.
However, an attorney’s other important role is to protect you from your own mistakes, especially when it comes to what you might say to another party at the scene of the accident. Depending on the nature of the accident, it is possible that both parties believe the other party is responsible for the accident, or both parties may believe they are responsible and the other party is innocent.
Even if you believe that you are responsible, do not admit this to the police or others involved in the accident. It is wise to simply cooperate with the other driver, but remain as calm and quiet as you can. Even apologizing to another driver may count as an admission of liability in some cases.
Gathering evidence comprehensively
An accident scene contains many kinds of evidence, some of which you may not know how to gather. An experienced attorney understands how to evaluate the scene and gather the strongest pieces of evidence to build your injury claim or support your innocence.
The attorney may gather video footage of the scene and several other types of evidence, including statements from others, security camera footage or driving logs from a commercial driver. This allows you to focus on your own recovery and ensures that you won’t miss any important pieces of evidence because of your disorientation from the experience.
Don’t put off seeking legal assistance after a car accident, especially one that causes significant damage or injuries. You may need more help and protection than you realize.