New Yorkers expect their ride to go smoothly when they get behind the wheel, but accidents can still happen. If you are in an accident, know that there are actions that you can take to protect your interests.
Remain at the scene and call 911
Regardless of who’s at fault for the accident, you must always remain at the scene. Driving away is considered a crime, so it’s possible to later be charged with hit-and-run. Call 911 to summon police and emergency medical services.
Get or exchange information
You must exchange information with the other driver. This should include names, phone numbers, addresses, license plate numbers and insurance information. Making note of the make, model and color of the other vehicle is also helpful.
While exchanging information, don’t make conversation, admit to fault or apologize.
A police officer should be on the scene, creating an accident report. Ask them for their name and badge number and where you can obtain a copy of the report for your records. Most likely, they’ll tell you to go to the precinct local to the immediate area.
Find witnesses to the car accident and ask for their names and contact information. Their statements could make all the difference in regard to the outcome of a personal injury claim if you choose to file one.
Seek medical attention
Even if you feel fine, it’s better to err on the side of caution and get medical attention after a car accident. You can get a medical diagnosis and have documentation for your claim if it turns out you’ve sustained an injury.
Notify your insurance company
Your insurance company should be notified immediately about the accident. Doing so can improve your chances of a successful claim for damages.