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After a car accident, when the vehicles have screeched to a halt and the immediate shock is over, you will need to speak with the other driver involved. While there might be many things you want to say to this person, it is important to remember there are some things you certainly shouldn’t. From admitting fault, to unnecessarily raising the tension of an already-tense situation, saying the wrong thing after an accident could cause more problems for you later on.
It is very possible that in the aftermath of a car crash, you will be suffering from shock and may not be able to process how much pain you are in. With the adrenaline of the accident still fueling their movements, many accident victims only realize they have suffered an injury much later when they have been examined by a doctor.
Because of this, it is important not to minimize any possible injuries when you speak with the other driver at the scene. Saying something as simple as “I’m fine” could be understood at face value. They may report this to their own insurance company, and this could be used to suggest that any injuries you later claim were not caused by the accident.
Many car accident victims, still shaken by the accident, might feel the need to apologize – no matter who is actually at fault. While this can be understandable, it is crucial that you never admit any sort of fault at the scene. You might not possess all of the facts and may not realize that other factors have caused the incident. Even so, an apology at the scene could be taken as an admission that the accident was entirely caused by you, and might mean you are not able to make a claim for the damages you suffer.
You might be understandably angry after a car accident, especially if you feel you were not to blame for it happening. However, it is important to avoid angrily accusing the other party and adding to the tension at the accident scene. It is better to let the police and insurance companies work out how the accident happened, and limit yourself to calmly providing your version of events as you saw them.
While you should be clear and accurate when explaining what you know about the accident, it is best to avoid speculating about anything you are not really aware of. For example, do not guess how fast the other car was traveling, or assume which icy patch they might have hit.
Speculating on the accident may only make it harder for others to investigate what caused the incident, and could create inconsistencies in your own version of events. If you do not know something, it is better to simply say that you don’t know.
This article is intended to be helpful and informative. But even common legal matters can become complex and stressful. A qualified car accident lawyer can address your particular legal needs, explain the law, and represent you in court. Take the first step now and contact a local car accident attorney to discuss your specific legal situation.