If you are in an auto accident there are certain things you should do
without hesitation. If unable to perform them direct someone capable to follow
Following them will undoubtedly help you be in a much better and
advantageous position to deal with this undesirable situation, and providing a
higher probability of potentially being able to receive compensation and or
payment for damages from either your own insurance or the opposing party who
caused the accident. More importantly, it can help all those involved in
the accident in getting immediate and possibly life saving assistance. But, above all pay close and particular attention to the safety and wellbeing
of your family members and or those involved and injured in the accident.
This, after all, is the most important rule to follow to the letter. Everything
else, will take care of itself. In order to assist you, in case you do become the victim of an unfortunate
auto accident, we have a handy insurance card holder with the rules to follow
printed on its cover. Just click below on the 'Get it Here Free' button,
to request free of charge this kit, which also comes with a calendar magnet and
Following them will undoubtedly help you be in a much better and advantageous position to deal with this undesirable situation, and providing a higher probability of potentially being able to receive compensation and or payment for damages from either your own insurance or the opposing party who caused the accident. More importantly, it can help all those involved in the accident in getting immediate and possibly life saving assistance. But, above all pay close and particular attention to the safety and wellbeing of your family members and or those involved and injured in the accident. This, after all, is the most important rule to follow to the letter. Everything else, will take care of itself.
In order to assist you, in case you do become the victim of an unfortunate auto accident, we have a handy insurance card holder with the rules to follow printed on its cover. Just click below on the 'Get it Here Free' button, to request free of charge this kit, which also comes with a calendar magnet and a pen.
Failure to stop is against the law. If possible, leave the vehicles in the position they were when they stopped.
Call 911 for an ambulance so anyone injured can get appropriate medical treatment. Please remember, injuries are not always evident, it always better to let a professional EMT (Emergency Medical Technician), make those determinations.
Take precautions to avoid further collisions by using such things as flares, flags, auto lights, and flashers.
Call local police or highway patrol immediately. Once they arrive make sure and request an accident report to be written. Never agree to waive a police report.
Obtain the name, address, phone number, vehicle registration and tag number, driver's license number and insurance information on the other driver. Also, the date, time and location address of the accident. Always ask the law enforcement officer at the scene for his/hers name and badge identification #.
Do NOT make any statements to anyone at the collision scene, except to the police officer. DO NOT ADMIT FAULT! or volunteer what could be perceived as incriminatory information.
Obtain the name, address, phone number and comments of all witnesses. If they will not volunteer this information, if possible, write down their automobile license plate number and a brief description about the witness. e.g. sex, age, ethnic origin, race, and or any other identifying information.
Make written notes. Note any admissions of fault by the other driver or witnesses. If you have a tape recorder, use it. If possible draw your own diagram of the site of the accident. Don't forget weather, driving and traffic control conditions.
Never, under no circumstances leave the scene of the accident until police arrives, process the accident scene and finally dismisses you.
If you have a camera, cell phone camera or camcorder take pictures of the scene, all involved cars and parties involved in the accident.
It's always a good policy to try to inform your closest relative or someone that can be available to follow through in case that you or someone with you was injured at the accident, or better yet come and get you and take you home, even if your car is drivable.
Call an attorney as soon as possible to advise you of your rights and subsequently assure the protection of the same. For details about our firm and how we can help you protect those rights, Click Here for our online secured accident information questionnaire.
1. DEAL WITH MY INSURANCE ADJUSTOR DIRECTLY? -
Before embarking into the area of 'do it yourself' negotiations with your
insurance company, please take a look and read the following:
Guidelines in understanding the perils of doing your own negotiations with insurance adjusters and how to protect yourselves.
Observation > Understand Claims Adjusters: Claims Adjusters are professionals. They are trained to negotiate by tremendously experienced and qualified psychologists, company insiders and company lawyers. They are trained to intimidate you, to hassle you, and use every psychological technique to encourage you to settle for the lowest amount possible and discourage people from using the services of a good lawyer.
Here are some basic rules of dealing with a claims adjuster:
A. Never give an insurance company an oral statement unless you are required to do so by the terms of a binding contract you signed. If you do, you will regret it. Oral statements can only hurt you and help the insurance company. You cannot beat them at their game. It is best not to try.
B. Claims Adjusters want you to continue negotiating; the longer you negotiate with them the higher the probability of settlement with the insurance company. By definition, you are not a lawyer and the insurance company knows you cannot file a lawsuit. They have nothing to fear. Our experience clearly demonstrates that lawyers negotiate settlements for substantially more than is ever offered you by a claim's adjuster.
C. Know how to negotiate. The first rule of negotiation is: Know what you want, and, once you decide what you want, don't vary. The second rule of negotiation is: Never bid against yourself. Once you set a number, never ever, ever give a lower number until the insurance company makes a response with an offer. Do not listen to what the insurance adjuster says, only to the number he offers. Think about the numbers that are offered. It's a wise decision to leave settlement and negotiations to the professionals. We have been doing this for OVER 35 years.
2. ABOUT DEADLINES - Please remember that there are deadlines or statutes of limitations for all claims. These statutes vary. We cannot tell you specifically when your statute expires, but generally speaking, and there are lots of exceptions to this rule, for personal injuries suffered in a NJ or Pa automobile crash, the statute is two years from the date of the injury. Tort claims require specific information and notices to be filed within 90 day periods, and there are other time limitations based on specific accident types and facts. There are many exceptions. If the Defendant is a government body or entity, some notices sometimes must be given as soon as 6 months. Please do not take this paragraph as legal advice as to when your claim is barred. You should consult a lawyer.
3. PRESERVE EVIDENCE - By preserving evidence, I mean take plenty of pictures of the car, document your medical expenses, keep all of the medical bills in a file. Keep an account of your lost wages, keep a diary of how this injury affected you. Keep a list and copies of your prescriptions.
4. WHY DO I NEED A LAWYER? - Lawyers assist you in attaining a full, fair, settlement for your claims. For a wrongful injury, we seek to recover the only thing the law allows, a full, fair and just compensation in monetary damages.
5. CAN I AFFORD AN ATTORNEY? - The Law Offices of Vincent J. Ciecka, Esq., P.C. handles injury cases on a contingency fee. That is, our fee is contingent upon us recovering monetary damages from you, either through settlement or a trial. In this way we share the risk. If we recover nothing, we are paid no fee. Our initial consultations are totally free and are done at your convenience. For those experiencing difficulties or hardships in having a 'office' consultation, we provide other means to discuss your specific accident situation. Just let our Office Manager know that 'special arrangements' are needed and they will be met to your satisfaction.
6. ADDITIONAL COSTS? - There are costs and expenses which are usually paid by the client after the case is settled and are separate from and in addition to the contingency fee.
Contingent attorney's fees refers only to those fees charged by an attorney for their legal services. Such fees are not permitted in all types of cases. Court costs and other additional expenses of legal action usually must be paid by the client.