Proper Forms Needed After A Car Accident
Unless you have been in a car accident, you are probably not aware of the many things that need to be done after an accident. There are forms to be filled out, people to talk to, and decisions to be made. Being prepared ahead of time, and having a strategy in place, will help minimize any stress you may feel from being in a car accident.
First and foremost, if you have been in a car accident and suffered any injuries, it is very important that you call the police or 911.
What Forms Need To Be Filled Out?
- Auto Accident Information Forms – This is a form that you may wish to print out and carry in your car. You can get a copy from your insurance company, or download it from the internet. Keep a copy in your glove compartment to remind you what information you will need to obtain after a car accident. The form asks questions such as date, time, location, and weather conditions; other driver’s personal and vehicle information; a police officer and witness information; property damage information, ambulance company information; injuries sustained; and towing company information. It also recommends taking pictures or video of people such as witnesses, drivers, or passengers; damaged vehicles; road debris; skid marks; etc. If you are unable to gather that information while at the accident scene, see if someone else can do it for you. If not, wait for the police to arrive and they will gather as much information as possible.
- Police Report – Although you won’t actually have to fill out and file a police report, you will have to provide information to the police officers so that they can fill it out. This is one way that the Auto Accident Information Forms will come in handy. If you are asked to sign the police report, check it thoroughly to make sure that all of the information is correct. Also, make sure to get a copy of it for your own records.
- Auto Insurance Company Forms – After the accident, you will be contacted by someone from your automobile insurance company. You will be asked to explain and verify the accident details, provide a copy of the police report if you have one, and sign some paperwork. It is important to get your facts straight before talking with them. If you are unsure of what to say, you may wish to consult with a personal injury lawyer beforehand.
- Health Insurance Company – If you have health insurance and were injured in a car accident, your health insurance company will ask whether or not your injuries were obtained during the accident. If they were, you will be asked to provide the name of the other driver’s insurance company so they can be billed.
- Employer – If you are out of work due to injury, your employer will most likely have you fill out or sign paperwork stating the reason for your absence from work, and how it relates to the injuries sustained during the accident.
- Disability Paperwork – If you are out of work for any length of time due to the injuries you sustained in the car accident, you may have to fill out and sign paperwork to collect disability insurance.
- Report of Traffic Accident (SR-1 Forms) – If you suffered a personal injury, or there is property damage that exceeds $750, the California Department of Motor Vehicles require that the SR-1 form be filled out and returned to the DMV within 10 days of your accident. Failure to notify the DMV within the required time can result in the suspension of your license.
- Car Accident Release of Liability Forms (Settlement Forms) – If the other driver’s insurance company offers to pay you because of the accident, you will be asked to sign a car accident release of liability form. It is a legally binding document that stipulates, in exchange for an agreed upon amount of money, you will not file a lawsuit against the driver or the insurance company. Before signing this type of form, be sure to consult with a personal injury attorney in Los Angeles who can provide you with expert legal advice.
Being prepared for a car accident is a great first step, but it doesn’t end there. Depending upon the severity of an accident, you may still need the advice of a highly qualified personal injury lawyer. The more serious your injuries, the more likely you will want to be represented by an experienced personal injury lawyer who can protect you and your financial well-being. If you want to talk with a car accident lawyer who has a proven track record in handling car accident cases, and who routinely obtains the maximum insurance recovery for its clients, give M&Y Personal Injury Lawyers a call.