Involved in an Automobile Accident in DC? What You Should Know

The time right after a car accident is chaotic, with significant emotional distress and severe physical injuries. If you or a loved one has been in a car accident, you will want an experienced attorney fighting for you.

An experienced legal advocate can handle questions from insurance companies and stand between you and creditors as you focus on restoring your health and overcoming the new obstacles thrown in your life. At Johnnie Bond Law, we understand the difficulties you face and we are ready to support you and fight for the compensation you deserve to make up for your losses and brighten your future.

Automobile Accident Claims Through Insurance

If your accident is the fault of another driver, you will need to deal with your insurance company and the other driver’s insurance. An insurance company may offer a fair settlement for your claim.

However, insurance is a business, so initial settlement offers usually provide far less than a victim is entitled to receive. The latest trend has been to offer an injured driver compensation before they retain an attorney to save money and not pay what you really deserve. Many injured drivers fall victim to this. 

A knowledgeable DC automobile accident lawyer could evaluate the circumstances and determine an approximate value for the claim based on legal precedent. This gives you a guideline to evaluate the adequacy of any settlement offers you receive.

Common Causes of Auto Accidents in the DC Area

Car accidents might result from bad weather, damaged roads, or medical emergencies, but negligent drivers are often the most obvious cause. Some common reasons for auto accidents caused by other motorists include:

  • Distracted or careless driving (such as using a cell phone)
  • Aggressive or reckless driving (including road rage)
  • Passenger distractions
  • Speeding
  • Drug or alcohol impairment

If another driver is responsible for an accident that caused you injury, don’t wait to contact an automobile accident attorney. Serious injuries can result even from low-speed collisions, and symptoms may not become evident until days after the accident. Get a thorough medical exam and let your advocates at Johnnie Bond Law handle the insurance companies so you can concentrate on taking care of yourself.

What You Should (and Should Not) Do After an Auto Accident

Here is a checklist of things to do immediately after an accident, if possible:

  • Contact the police right away.
  • Alert emergency personnel about any injuries to yourself or others.
  • Do not say you’re sorry or say anything that could be taken as an admission of guilt (the insurance company or other driver may use this against you later).
  • Gather the other driver’s name, phone number, driver’s license number, license plate, and insurance information.
  • Collect witnesses’ names and phone numbers.
  • Take photos of the vehicles. If possible, take photos of the vehicles as soon as possible after the crash to capture images of the collision and points of impact. These images will help to show how the other driver was at fault. 
  • Take photos of the surrounding area. There may be skid marks, nearby stop signs, traffic signals, and lane markings to show how the other driver was at fault. For example, if a driver crossed over a solid line into your lane, this will show in the photos.  
  • Do not leave the area until the police have made a report. In the DMV area, the police will not take a report unless someone must go to the hospital from the scene of the crash. Otherwise, the police will require both drivers to exchange information and will not create a report. 
  • Undergo a thorough medical exam to determine the extent of any injuries within 72 hours. Insurance companies will likely argue that injured victims are not truly hurt unless they seek immediate medical attention. 
  • Seek medical attention even if you do not feel pain immediately. Human bodies are not designed to absorb impact from motor vehicles. After a crash, your body produces adrenaline as part of the “fight or flight” response. During this time, you may not feel any pain for days after a crash. 

If you are unable to take photos at the time due to your injuries, send someone to the site to take pictures of the accident scene and vehicles involved. Pay close attention to skid marks and signs of damage.

Consult an Auto Accident Attorney Experienced with Claims in the DC Metro Area

You can trust Johnnie Bond Law to handle your automobile accident claim with courtesy and professionalism. Our law firm has the knowledge and experience needed to get insurers to provide maximum compensation for your injuries through a settlement or trial litigation. Contact us for a free consultation today.