As long as people drive vehicles, there will be car accidents and people having car accidents started almost as soon as there were cars. According to history, the first car accident on record happened in 1891 in Ohio City, Ohio. The accident involved the world’s first single cylinder gas automobile and a hitching post. According to the record, the car hit a tree root which caused the driver to lose control of the vehicle and run into a hitching post. Fortunately injuries from the accident were minor.
Today we drive at much higher speeds, the weight of our vehicles including large trucks is almost incomparable with vehicles in the 1800s, and with the sheer number of vehicles on the roads what else can be expected but that there will be a lot of accidents.
If you find yourself involved in a car accident, there are several things you should keep in mind because not everything we believe as fact about car accidents is true. These myths include:
- “You and the other driver involved in the accident can negotiate damages and work it out.” Unless your accident is a minor fender bender which requires just the exchange of insurance information, you should never admit guilt and should seek legal advice to protect your rights and insure you will receive fair compensation.
- “People expect that the police will determine who is at fault.” The police should always be called to file a report of the accident especially if the accident was serious but in the end, fault is determined by insurance companies, lawyers, and the courts. You should always take your own pictures and write down your own recollection of the accident while it is fresh in your mind to help later in the process.
- “You cannot sue for injuries later if you did not think you were hurt in the accident at first.” Sometimes soft tissue injuries like whiplash can take time to develop and you may not be aware of them at first. You should always get checked out by a doctor even if you don’t think you have been injured. If you develop a problem later always check with a personal injury attorney because there are statutes of limitations which can vary from state to state and your attorney understands these laws and exceptions to them.
- “Let the insurance company handle everything for you.” While it is very important to have insurance, your policy may not cover you for all your damages. Additionally, the other driver’s insurance company is going to try to settle for the least amount of liability they can. This is why it is important to seek the advice of a car accident attorney to make sure you are being treated fairly and will get the compensation that you deserve.
- “You don’t need a personal injury attorney to file a car accident injury claim.” Probably not for a minor accident, but for a serious accident — especially if there is a disagreement about who caused the accident, it is to your advantage to have a car accident attorney represent you. Your attorney is on your side and has your back.
If you or a family member has been in a serious car accident the first thing you need to do is get medical treatment for your injuries. The second thing you should do is find an experienced Atlanta car accident attorney to protect your rights while handling your injury claim.
Contact Joel Baskin an experienced attorney serving accident injury victims in Atlanta including Cobb & Fulton Counties. Joel offers a free initial consultation so you can learn about your rights and options regarding your accident injury claim.