What to do Following a Car Accident in South Carolina
Here are some important steps to take following a car accident in South Carolina, to ensure that your legal rights are protected.
1. Call the police and report the accident and get medical attention.
Call the police yourself or make sure that someone else has done so. Do not assume that someone else has alerted police. If you have been injured, seek medical assistance. You can tell the police phone operator that you require emergency attention and ask them to send an emergency vehicle to transport you to a hospital. You should consult with a medical professional even if you do not have any obvious injuries. Following an accident, you might not be in the best position to judge for yourself whether you are injured, or you might be suffering from an injury that is not immediately apparent to you, such as a concussion. Once the police arrive, you should explain what happened to the officer on the scene so that the facts of the accident are accurately recorded to the police report he files.
2. Exchange information with the other driver
You should exchange the following information with the other driver: full legal name, insurance carrier, insurance policy number, license plate number, telephone number, and address.
3. Take photographs of the accident scene.
Photographs are useful for insurance adjusters as they investigate your case. Photos may also be useful to a jury if your case goes to trial.
4. Write down what you remember about the accident as soon as possible
Your memory will fade over time and your notes may be helpful in negotiating with the insurance company or if your case were to go to trial.
5. Interview witnesses about their perceptions of the accident and record this information on a smartphone, notepad or other device.
You may obtain valuable observations from witnesses, such as the driver that caused the accident. Every smartphone has a recorder function for a maximum of 8 minutes per segment, and you can easily record these witness observations on your personal smartphone.
6. Call your insurance company as soon as practical.
Call your insurance company to report the accident as soon as you can. Some insurance policies require you to report an accident with an uninsured motorist within a certain period of time. Accurately describe the accident to your insurance company, but do not admit fault for the accident.
7. Consult with the Law Offices of Richard A. Hricik or another experienced South Carolina automobile accident lawyer
Following an accident in which you have been injured, you should consult with a South Carolina automobile accident lawyer. It is in the best interest of an insurance company to pay as little as possible for a claim. An experienced automobile accident attorney is familiar with the methods insurance companies use and can ensure that your rights are protected. Richard Hricik has successfully negotiated favorable settlements or won trials on behalf of dozens of individuals injured in automobile accidents.
South Carolina law requires drivers involved in an automobile accident to remain at the scene of an accident unless there are severe injuries that require a person to be escorted to the hospital. South Carolina law also requires drivers involved in an automobile accident to render aid to others injured in the accident.
What Not to Do Following a Car Accident
- Do not admit fault to the other driver or your insurance company.
- Do not post to FaceBook or tweet about your accident.
- Do not leave the scene of an accident, except in exigent circumstances to seek medical help.