What to say and not to say after an auto accident?
The immediate aftermath of a car accident can be shocking and scary, especially if you know the accident was not your fault. Right after the accident, it can be nerve racking to get out of the car and speak with the other driver or drivers involved. It is important to be careful what you say however, because saying the wrong thing could come back to haunt you later.
We all want to be polite, and it may seem like common courtesy to apologize to the other drivers even if you know the accident was not your fault. After all, they may be hurt or worrying over the damage to their car as well. Unfortunately, there is a real and legal danger to telling the others involved in the accident that you are sorry, as it may be used against you as an admission of fault. Even if you think the accident may have actually been your fault, it is best to limit discussion with the other parties to ensuring that they are okay and exchanging insurance information and other details. Anything else may have unforeseen legal ramifications.
You should always call the police after an accident so that they can file a police report and help make a determination of who is at fault. The police may ask you questions about what happened to cause the accident, and it is important not to estimate or guess when talking to them. In fact, it is completely acceptable to tell the police that you are not sure what happened, or what the conditions were if you are actually not sure. Guesses can be wrong, and can result in invalid information in the police report. Of course, you should also never lie to the police. If the police determine that you are at fault or issue you a ticket, this is not a final determination and can be fought later in court.
After the accident, the best way to protect yourself is to contact an car accident lawyer Dekalb County GA relies on who can represent you in any legal proceedings or settlement negotiations, and who will be an expert on your rights and responsibilities moving forward from the accident. Even a simple accident can grow complicated once insurance companies and the courts are involved, a skilled auto accident attorney will be able to take the headache out of navigating the legal process.
Thanks to our friends and contributors from Andrew R. Lynch, P.C.for their insight into auto accident cases.