Motor Vehicle Accidents
Getting into a car accident can be an incredibly traumatic Event. Trying to handle the details of fixing your car and dealring with insurance companies can be equally traumatic. Below are some things you should know when you get into an accident, as well as some basic informaiton on what insurance coverages apply.
What to do if you are in a Car Accident:
If you are involved in a car accident, you need to do the following:
1. Be Safe: Do not get out of your car in an active traffic situation. It is best not to move your car so that you can properly document where the accident took place, but do not do so if traffic is heavy.
2. Call the police: If you are involved in an accident involving car damage or injuries, you have an obligation to call the police. Stay in your car until they arrive and they will tell you what to do.
3. Document the scene and cars: Take Pictures! There is no better evidence at trial than pictures from the scene. Take pictures of both cars, the street signs and the surrounding areas.
4. Get immediate medical attention: If you are injured or feeling pain, do not delay to get medical attention. Go to a hospital or urgent care center and beging treatment for your injuries. It is important to know that if you do not get treatment for your injuries within 14 days from the accident, you will forfeit your right to receive Personal Injury Protection (P.I.P.) benefits.
5. Call an Attorney: From the minute your claim begins, the insurance companies will be trying to limit your claims. Contact an attorney immediately to protect your rights. Do not sign any document that the insurance companies give you to sign and do not give a recorded statement without first speaking to an attorney.
After an accident, you will hear about different coverages that apply. Below is a short summary of applicable Insurances.
P.I.P.: Personal Injury Protection Insurance: This insurance, through your own policy, pays for 80% of your medical bills and 60% of your lost wages no matter who is at fault in the accident. In order to qualify for this coverage, you must seek medical treatment within 14 days of the crash.
Property Damage Insurance: This insurance, held by the at fault driver, pays for the Property Damage suffered to your car.
B.I.: Bodily Injury Coverage: This insurance, held by the at fault driver, pays for your injuries.