St. Louis Car Accident Attorneys
Being involved in a serious car accident can be devastating to a victim and his or her family. While the accident itself and the injuries caused by the accident are more than enough for any victim to handle, dealing with unfair insurance adjusters, and legal responsibilities arising out of a crash make for an extremely unpleasant experience.
That is why it is so important to access information about making auto accident claims right away, and deciding whether or not a St. Louis car accident lawyer is right for you.
Our experienced car accident attorneys advise victims of motor vehicle accidents to speak to legal counsel as soon as practicable. Personal injury attorneys almost never charge for a consultation fee. In fact, if a car crash lawyer asks you for an upfront fee, RUN.
Protecting your rights should be your attorney’s number one priority. Find an attorney who is in the legal business for the right reasons.
What to do at the Scene of the Accident
After a crash, adrenaline your is pumping, you’re checking to see if your passengers are hurt, you’re checking to see if you’re hurt. Injuries can be severe and emotions high. Below is our list of things you should do immediately following an accident:
- Stay at the scene: It is illegal to leave an accident if your car was involved. If you leave, especially if someone has been injured or killed, you can face serious criminal penalties.
- Check on all drivers and passengers: Prioritize people before property damage. Check on all passengers and drivers of other cars. If medical attention is necessary, it’s important that injured victims get help right away. Remember, if someone is unconscious, or has serious neck or back pain, don’t move them. Wait until qualified help arrives unless an imminent hazard requires moving the person.
- Call 911: If there is any physical injury, property damage, or death, call the police right away. If they don’t do it automatically, ask the police for a police report to be filed. Also, it never hurts to take down badge numbers and names of officers.
- Exchange Information: When talking to other drivers, it’s important to be cordial and cooperate. This is a high-stress situation, but you’ll need to exchange names, phone numbers, and addresses. Becoming irate will do nobody any good.
- Talk to Witnesses: If witnesses stopped at the scene, ask them politely for their name, numbers, or addresses. If they’re local, ask if they’ve seen accidents in that stretch of road before.
- Look around: Take note of not only the accident scene, but other factors that may have contributed to the accident. Is traffic high? how is the weather? Notice things that others might overlook.
- Take Pictures: Everyone has a cell phone these days. If possible, take multiple photographs with different angles of the accident scene. If it’s not possible to take pictures at the scene, take pictures of any damage to your vehicle.
- Call your Insurance Company: Tell your insurance company that you’ve been injured in an accident as soon as possible. It’s important to cooperate with them, and be honest. If the insurance company learns that you lied about anything, it could cost you.
When The Insurance Company Downplays your Injuries
After a car crash, he insurance company for the driver who caused the accident is going to be experienced in dealing with injury and property damage claims. They will be gearing up for the prospect of litigation from the moment they are notified of an injury claim. These insurance companies will often demand a tape-recorded statement. Without an experienced auto accident lawyer, you are at risk of being taken advantage of. Any recorded statement is only for the benefit of the insurance company, not for your benefit.
Insurance adjusters may also request a signed medical release from the injury victim. That allows the insurance company to obtain any of your medical records, regardless of whether they are related to the accident or not. This is unfair! More often than not, the insurance companies of the driver that caused the accident will NOT pay for your medical expenses or authorize you to seek skilled medical care. They are under no legal obligation to do so until there is a resolution of the entire injury claim.
Damage to Your Vehicle
A question that usually arises soon after an accident occurs regards getting your vehicle fixed, or being paid for the damage done to your vehicle in the accident.
Insurance companies typically address these property damage claims soon after the accident. Insurance companies love to argue over property damage claims.
Particularly, they will argue that your vehicle isn’t worth as much as you may think…or they will attempt to fix your vehicle with used second-hand parts.
Don’t fall for the games of the insurance claims adjuster. Get the experience of Schultz & Myers on your side. After all, our car accident lawyers are recognized as leaders in personal injury litigation by our peers. Our attorneys are consistently featured in legal periodicals, local newspapers, and have been interviewed by the media on countless occasions.
Many victims who are injured in a car accident in Missouri will never recover the full amount of compensation they may be entitled to, because they don’t understand just how much their claim may be worth. They may accept the first offer the unfair insurance company claims adjuster makes and then be left with an inadequate settlement.
After a wreck occurs, drivers and passengers are often disoriented; the adrenaline is pumping, and everything seems to be happening so fast. This is also the time when extreme detail is crucial for obtaining compensation later on. If you’ve been in a recent car accident, print out these Post-Accident Resource pages. They’ll walk you through the process of gathering information and filing a report:
Any questions? Remember the fours: 314-444-4444. You don’t have to sit at home wondering what to do next. You have options, including the right to representation by an experienced St. Louis personal injury lawyer who will turn the tables on an unfair insurance claims adjuster. Your lawyer will immediately step in to handle the legal aspects of your claim.
Your only job following a serious car accident should be to focus on recovery.