What to Do in a Car Accident in Texas
If you’re ever in a car accident, it’s normal to feel overwhelmed and unsure about what steps to take next. However, the things you say and do, as well as the things you don’t, can impact any legal claims you might have to recover compensation from the negligent driver who caused the crash. Below are some general steps to take to protect yourself and your legal claim. For more personalized advice and assistance after a car accident in Houston or surrounding areas, call McLemore, Reddell, & Story, P.L.L.C., for a free consultation with a team of highly qualified and successful Houston personal injury lawyers.
1. Ensure Safety First
First and foremost, check the well-being of everyone involved. If anyone is injured, call 911 immediately. In case of minor accidents, move your vehicle to a safe location, if possible, to prevent further damage or accidents.
2. Report the Accident
In Texas, it is a legal requirement to report a car accident to the police if it results in injury, death, or property damage exceeding $1,000. The officer at the scene will prepare an accident report, which may prove crucial for your insurance claim or legal actions.
3. Exchange Information
Exchange information with the other drivers involved in the accident. This should include their names, addresses, telephone numbers, insurance details, and license plate numbers. If there are witnesses, it would be beneficial to collect their contact information as well.
4. Document the Scene
If it’s safe and feasible, take photographs of the accident scene, including the damage to all vehicles involved, road conditions, traffic signs, and any visible injuries. This visual evidence can play a crucial role in proving liability and damage later on.
5. Seek Medical Attention
Even if you believe you’re unharmed, it’s crucial to seek medical attention promptly. Some injuries may not present immediate symptoms but could cause significant problems down the line. Plus, a doctor’s report can be valuable evidence should you need to file a personal injury claim.
6. Notify Your Insurance Company
Report the accident to your insurance company as soon as possible, even if you believe the other driver was at fault. Your insurer will start the claims process, which could involve sending an adjuster to assess the damage to your vehicle.
7. Keep a Record
Maintain a file with all accident-related documents and information. This should include the police report, medical records, repair bills, and any correspondence with the insurance companies. These documents can be essential when negotiating a settlement or filing a lawsuit.
8. Consult a Personal Injury Attorney
Finally, consider consulting with a personal injury attorney, particularly if you sustained serious injuries, the liability is in dispute, or you feel the insurance settlement offer is unfair. Experienced attorneys, like those at McLemore, Reddell, & Story, P.L.L.C., understand the complexities of personal injury law and can ensure your rights are protected.
At McLemore, Reddell, & Story, P.L.L.C., we help victims of car accidents navigate through these complicated times. With a vast wealth of experience and a deep understanding of the Texas legal landscape, we can provide the support and guidance you need to secure the compensation you deserve. Call 713-303-8543 for a free consultation.