Fender benders usually occur in parking lots or other locations where vehicles are moving at slow speeds. Nevertheless, fender benders are serious accidents that can cause thousands of dollars of damage. If you have been in an accident, you might wonder what you should do.
Below, our car accident lawyers identify the steps you should take to protect your health and your right to compensation. Make sure to reach out to Delventhal Law Office for assistance.
Check to Make Sure Everyone is Okay
Even at low speeds, occupants in your car could suffer serious injuries, including whiplash, fractures, concussions, and back injuries. You want to ask everyone if they are okay or if they need an ambulance to come pick them up.
Get the Other Driver’s Personal Information
You should get the following information and share the same with the other driver:
- Name and contact information
- Name of insurance company and contact information
- Driver’s license number
- License plate number
- Make, model, and year of the vehicle
Getting this information is important so you can make an insurance claim.
Call the Police
Indiana law requires that you notify the police of any accident that causes a bodily injury to someone, no matter how minor, or at least $1,000 in total damage to the vehicles. Given how expensive it is to repair a vehicle, most accidents cause at least $1,000 in damage. You should call the police, who can send an officer to write a police report.
Your accident might be very minor—only a scratch on the fender. If so, the police might decline to send someone out. However, you should always at least check by calling. A police report helps show the insurance companies that an accident really did happen as well as the date, time, and location.
Speak with Witnesses
People who observed the accident could also play a crucial role if you ever need to file an insurance claim or bring a lawsuit. A witness could be anyone who saw the accident, including passengers in either vehicle, bystanders, or people in other vehicles that were not involved in the fender bender.
Get the names of all witnesses, as well as their contact information. Your attorney might want to speak to them later and write down what they saw. You can also ask witnesses what they saw or leave it to your lawyer.
Take Pictures of Damage
Pictures can help establish who hit who. Ideally, you should get at least one photo soon after the collision before you move the vehicles out of the way. Have a passenger hop out and get a snap using a smartphone.
You should also take pictures of any scratches or dents on either vehicle. Zoom in and take pictures from different angles, if necessary, so that the damage is visible.
Contact a Car Accident Attorney in Fort Wayne Today
This is also an important step. Some people wrongly believe that their accidents were too minor to receive compensation for. You should at least talk to an experienced attorney to check. At Delventhal Law, we help those injured in fender benders, so give us a call right away.