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I Just Got Hit . . . Now What?

 two drivers arguing after traffic accident

Every day, people throughout Indiana depend on motor vehicles to get them from place to place. Our reliance on automobiles can make it seem almost impossible to travel anywhere without them. Cars undoubtedly make modern life more convenient, but they also cause a lot of injuries. Motor vehicle collisions happen all the time, and victims frequently have to deal with more than just a few bumps and bruises. If you’ve been hurt in a collision, the effects can reach all corners of your life. In addition to your own physical well-being, you may find yourself worrying about medical bills, transportation, and work and family obligations. Car accidents are stressful.

Bad luck has a way of making you feel like the world is out to get you, but auto collisions are inevitable, and Attorneys at the Marc Lopez Law Firm are always ready to help. Everyone gets into a car crash at some point, so here are a few things to keep in mind the next time this happens to you:

1.)   Try to stay calm. It’s highly unlikely that the other driver hit you intentionally. He’s probably just as anxious and upset as you are.

2.)   Call the police so they can file an accident report. This is a good idea even if you think the damage is minimal. Documentation is always advisable, and the police will collect a lot of details regarding the collision that might otherwise be lost to time or frayed nerves. Be cordial and polite to the responding officer, and if you can, TAKE PHOTOS of the vehicles and the damage.

3.)   If you experience pain, seek medical treatment as soon as possible. The responding officer will ask about your condition, and will usually offer to call an ambulance for you. This is not a good time to show how tough you are. If you feel you might need the ambulance — take it. Different types of injuries produce different types of symptoms. A broken bone probably hurts RIGHT NOW, but some pains come on more slowly. Stress causes your body to release adrenaline, which might mean you won’t be feeling that soft tissue damage you sustained until a few hours after the fact.

4.)   Most importantly, DO NOT communicate with the other driver’s insurance company. It’s safe to assume they’re NOT in the business of looking out for you. They will offer you a quick, small settlement to try and make you go away.  Remember, settlements are final and once accepted, you cannot go back and renegotiate. Also keep in mind that insurance providers — even your own — will never advise you regarding medical treatment. Only you can make that decision. When selecting a medical provider, use your best judgment and whatever resources are available to you.

Immediately following an accident, most people you speak to aren’t going to have your best interests at heart. The at-fault party may try to minimize the severity of the damage, or may offer excuses as to why the collision occurred. Insurance companies just want to avoid further financial obligations, so they’ll try to settle your claim as quickly and as cheaply as possible. Medical providers might even appear to offer you treatment at no cost, but there’s no such thing as a free lunch. If you’re awarded money in a settlement, they will absolutely hit you with a sizable bill and do their best to collect.

When you’re injured in an accident, it doesn’t mean the world is out to get you. It does, however, mean you’re probably going to need some help. The attorneys at the Marc Lopez Law Firm have years of experience representing people who’ve been hurt in motor vehicle collisions. They know the vulnerability that follows a trauma, and they understand the nuances of personal injury litigation. For some attorneys, the courtroom is a place to be avoided; for the attorneys at the Marc Lopez Law Firm, it’s their home away from home. If you’re struggling to deal with the aftereffects of an auto collision, you need an experienced trial attorney. Call 317-632-3642 today for a free consultation.