personal injury

Do I Need to Call the Police If I Am In an Auto Accident?

In Personal Injury by Greensboro Attorney

Whenever you’re in an auto accident, no matter how seemingly minor, calling 911 on your cellphone immediately afterward and requesting law enforcement assistance always represents your best strategy. Why? Several reasons, including the following:

  • Making a police report establishes the date and time of your accident.
  • It establishes any injuries you or your passengers receive.
  • It establishes any property damage your car sustains.
  • It establishes your version of what happened and how it happened.

All of this can be crucial evidence if you decide to sue the driver who caused your accident or – perhaps even more importantly – if he or she decides to sue you.

Talking to Law Enforcement Officers

While it’s in your best interests to make a police report after being in an auto accident, you should, nevertheless, be careful what you say to the officers and how you say it. For instance, never say or indicate in any way that you think

your caused the accident or contributed to it. If you do, this is considered to be an admission against interest that could result in your getting a ticket.

In addition, such an admission could, and undoubtedly will, come back to haunt you when the other driver obtains his or her copy of the police report and discovers that you admitted fault. Needless to say, he or she will probably sue you, using your admission as evidence against you in court.

Talking to Your Insurance Company

You should likewise be careful when reporting the accident to your own insurance company. Again, say nothing to indicate that you think you were partially or totally at fault. Instead, simply give your company’s representative the following information:

  • The approximate time of the accident
  • The approximate location of the accident
  • The injuries you initially think your suffered
  • The property damage you initially think your car sustained
  • The police report number

Talking to the Other Driver’s Insurance Company

When it comes to talking to the other driver’s insurance company, the best advice is simply don’t do it. If you suffered injuries or if you think there’s any chance the other driver might sue you, you should contact an experienced local car accident lawyer as soon as possible. Then if a claims adjuster working for the other driver’s insurance company calls you, you can refer him or her to your lawyer rather than talking to him or her yourself. An experienced personal injury lawyer, like our friends at Cohen & Cohen,  not only will know how to handle insurance negotiations, but also how to protect your legal rights and interests.