Many people try to lead safe and sensible lives, trusting their own natural instincts of self-preservation and making smart choices to avoid the risks and dangers of the world. However, even with all the care and consideration you can muster, you can never be fully prepared for every eventuality, and life has a funny habit of surprising us with all kinds of unforeseen obstacles and challenges we never expected.
Life, quite simply, is unpredictable, and you never know when danger might strike. This simple fact leads to millions of people having injuries and accidents every single year, and it doesn't matter whether you're at home, on the road, doing a seemingly regular day of work, or out on the town with your friends, accidents can and do happen at any time and in any place.
But what do you do when an accident happens? Who do you turn to? What rights do you have? What should your priorities be? There are a lot of questions, and many people aren't quite sure of the answers, so when they find themselves injured or in accidents, they don't know exactly how to respond. This guide will give you the answers you need to some common questions about accidents.
What should I do after an accident?
In the wake of an accident, it's perfectly normal to feel stressed, anxious, scared, and overwhelmed, not knowing who to turn to or what to do. While it can be a challenge to get your emotions under control, it's important to try and do so. Staying as calm as you can help you make the right decisions, and your very first action should be to seek medical attention.
Ultimately, when accidents happen, health and safety needs to be the primary concern of all involved. You'll also need to think about contacting the police to file an official report, as well as getting in touch with the insurance provider and potentially a lawyer too, but in the immediate aftermath, your focus needs to be on getting your injuries tended to.
If the situation is urgent, you or someone else at the scene should dial 911 and request an ambulance. If the injuries aren't quite as severe, you may be able to get yourself to a hospital or ask a friend to take you. In any case, even if you don't feel any major pain or notice any serious injuries, getting yourself diagnosed by a professional is key.
What are the next steps to take?
As well as seeking medical care and attention for any injuries you may have, it's also imperative to carry out several other tasks, including contacting the police to file an official report of the incident that you can refer back to later, as well as contacting your insurance provider to let them know about the situation and also getting in touch with a lawyer too.
Documenting the scene is also recommended, as every bit of evidence you can gather will help you out later on if you pursue a case against the person or party responsible for causing the incident in the first place. As time goes by, evidence is more likely to disappear, so time really is of the essence, and the faster you act, the better chance you'll have of success.
Expert lawyers always recommend acting as quickly as possible in cases of accidents and injuries, as the time period between the injury itself and your deadline for building up a case won't last long. The statute of limitations can vary from state to state, and putting a case together takes time, so try not to hesitate or delay the process in any way.
What rights do I have?
Too many people get injured in accidents that weren't their fault but simply suffer in silence, taking on the expenses that come along with their injury themselves and failing to make the most of the rights they have to compensation and justice. In truth, you have a lot of protection when you get hurt due to the negligence or recklessness of others.
A lawyer can help you understand your rights and assist you with building a strong and stable case against the party that caused you harm. In many cases, these cases don't even end up going to court, and settlements for personal injuries can often end up as six-figure sums, which can be very useful for covering expenses from medical bills, recovery costs, loss of income, and personal damages.
It's important to remember that the costs of accidents aren't just limited to the medical bills you initially have to pay for treating your injuries. There can be many additional costs that start to add up over time if your injuries require a lengthy recovery process and if your life is affected negatively in other ways. Suffering in silence isn't the answer, so be sure to take action quickly and get the assistance you need.
What types of accidents qualify for legal assistance?
If you're wondering about whether or not your particular injury or accident is worthy of a legal claim, it's important to know that many kinds of accidents can and do lead to legal action all the time. Examples include auto accidents, bicycle accidents, pedestrian accidents, slip and fall accidents, workplace accidents, and so on.
As long as an accident occurred that wasn't your fault, was caused by the negligence of another party, and caused you sufficient personal injury or harm to be worth pursuing, then it absolutely should qualify as a personal injury case. If you have any doubts on the matter, getting a free consultation with a trusted lawyer is a good way to find out more.
Getting injured is never a nice experience and it's something that we should all do our best to avoid. However, if an accident does occur and you're the victim, make sure to follow the steps listed above, acting promptly and decisively to get the help you need.