5 Common Car Accident Myths
Car accidents can be frightening events, no matter how they happen. Dealing with the other driver and communicating with insurance companies can make you feel confused and frustrated, and myths about car accidents only make it worse. Here we tackle five of these myths to separate fact from fiction.
Myth #1: All auto injury laws are the same, regardless of the state
Fact: Each state has different auto accident and injury laws because state-run agencies regulate car insurance rates. While car insurance can be complicated to begin with, it can suddenly seem even more complicated and confusing when you actually need to use it.
Certain states have no-fault insurance laws, while others have at-fault laws. Some require the insured to purchase an additional liability insurance, while others do not. If you get in an accident, whether you’re at fault or not, things can become especially complicated if the collision happens in a different state than the one you live in.
Myth #2: The accident was very minor, so it’s OK to leave the scene
Fact: Failure to do either of these things can cause a lot of legal trouble for you. Texas law requires those involved in any type of collision involving vehicles to pull over and stay at the scene. Even if the crash doesn’t seem to have caused any injuries or property damage, leaving the scene of an accident could result in a misdemeanor charge.
If you are involved in an accident and aren’t seriously injured, follow these steps:
- Immediately pull over and check to see if you or your passengers are injured.
- If the other driver does not pull over, try to take down the car’s make, model, and license plate information.
- Call the police, especially if there are injuries, if there is significant damage to either car, or if you suspect the other driver is under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
- Exchange insurance and contact information with the other driver.
- Take photos of the accident scene. These photos, if taken with a smart phone or digital camera, can help you establish the location, date, and time of the accident as well as the conditions at the scene.
- Make a complete statement to the police, but do not admit fault or make any statements assessing who was at fault.
- Get witnesses’ contact information, or make sure that they talk to the police.
- Notify your insurance company within 24 hours of the accident if you plan to make a claim.
- Make an appointment with a physician so you can receive a diagnosis and treatment for any potential injuries or conditions caused by the accident.
- Contact an experienced personal injury attorney if you’ve been hurt.
If you do decide to work with an attorney to file a personal injury claim and potentially receive compensation for your injuries, you will be thankful you followed these steps.
Myth #3 – I don’t need a lawyer because my insurer will take care of my claim
Fact: Unfortunately, the fact that you pay your auto insurance premium every month does not mean your insurance company is your ally when it comes to your claim. Insurers may not feel your claim is worth pursuing because it will take up too much of their time and resources. This can leave you without a car, with extensive car repair and medical bills, and no clear answers.
The best solution to this problem is to contact an experienced personal injury lawyer. If you have an experienced attorney working with you, you can rest assured that you have someone on your side to assist you in getting the compensation and justice you deserve.
Myth #4 – I feel fine, so I don’t need to see a doctor
Fact: Many injuries and health complications that result from a car accident may take time to manifest. For example, brain and head injuries, neck injuries, and back injuries can all be difficult to detect without diagnostic testing, and they sometimes only display their severity and full range of symptoms over time.
Even if you think you feel fine, you should see a physician right away after a car accident to receive a full physical examination and diagnostic testing. That minor ache or pain you feel could be the first sign of a chronic condition that will get worse over time rather than a simple bump or bruise. And if you don’t visit a doctor and receive a diagnosis and treatment for your injuries, you won’t have the option to receive compensation for them later, even if they turn out to be severe.
Myth #5 – No one is looking out for me after my car accident
Fact: If you’ve been hurt in a car accident, the law firm of Hossley & Embry is here to act as your ally and legal advocate.
We know that a car accident can be devastating for everyone involved. If you or a loved one has been injured in an auto accident and are seeking representation for a claim, contact the experienced personal injury attorneys at Hossley & Embry. Our attorneys will thoroughly investigate your claim, deal with the insurance companies, and strive to make sure you receive compensation for your losses.
Call our offices at (866) 522-9265, or fill out a convenient contact form. We have the resources available (including charter aircraft) to travel throughout Texas and the United States on short notice to investigate your potential claim.