How can we help you?
Car crashes are not “accidents.”
An accident just happens: it not predictable or preventable.
The majority of car crashes are not accidents. They are the predictable result of poorly designed streets, unsafe vehicles—or drivers who are distracted, drive too fast, ignore traffic signals, or drive under the influence.
What to do after a car crash
Get medical care.
If you were hurt in the crash, the most important thing you can do is get the recommended medical treatment.
No one is ready for the life-changing consequences of a car crash. You may be dealing with a variety of injuries and problems, including:
Physical: Serious collisions can result in broken bones, head trauma, brain injury, spinal cord damage, and internal injuries.
Mental: One driver’s bad choice can change your life in a second. Violent, traumatic crashes and the aftermath of recovery can be very hard on mental health.
Emotional: It can be difficult for others to understand how emotionally hard it is to experience a life-threatening event—or to lose someone in a fatal crash.
Get the help you need after a car crash.
Don’t push yourself too hard. Sometimes, people who return to work or stop medical treatment before they are healed end up having terrible relapses.
Time makes it much harder to reconstruct what happened.
Keep a file of documents and information, including:
- Medical bills and related expenses;
- Police or incident reports;
- Photographs of the scene, the vehicle damage, and the injuries caused by the crash;
- Property damage estimates;
- Work time lost, and
- Correspondence from insurance companies or law firms.
Open an insurance claim.
Even if the crash was not your fault, you need to notify your insurance company. If you have not already done so, contact your own auto insurance company and open a claim.
Then, your insurance company will assign an adjuster to your claim. Depending on the number of vehicles and people involved in the crash, several insurance companies may assign adjusters.
Be cautious about speaking with another person’s insurance company. Do not give a recorded statement without speaking to a lawyer.
For more detailed information, review this guide to understanding your car insurance.
You should not consider an offer of settlement until you have fully recovered from your injuries.
If your injuries are permanent, then talk with your doctors about long term care needs.
If you are concerned about paying the medical bills, then speak to a representative from your insurance provider about your policy benefits.
Your legal rights
You have the right to talk to a lawyer before speaking with an insurance company.
Often, the other driver admits fault at the scene of the crash. You reasonably believe that your bills and expenses will be covered by the other driver’s car insurance.
But once insurance companies gets involved, the at-fault driver may change their story … or the insurance company may blame you. Many personal injury law firms, including Coluccio Law, offer a free consultation.
You have the right to chose where, and how, your vehicle is repaired.
Your vehicle might be a total loss. But many people find that the insurance company recommends repair, and offers a “preferred” auto repair shop. These mechanics may have deals with the insurance company, but you are not obligated to have your car repaired there.
You have the right to have any offers of settlement reviewed by an attorney.
Attorney Kevin Coluccio has been helping car crash victims get justice since 1985.
He has helped hundreds of injured people get through a difficult process – find out if Coluccio Law can help you.
Talk to a lawyer
Featured Car Crash Case: An Easter trip turns into a nightmare
Case: “Smith” Family v. “John Doe” Company.
Result: a $1.6 million settlement for the Smith family.
On Easter Sunday, the Smiths piled in to the family car. They had plans to meet friends in Washington State for an Easter Dinner.
Then, a speeding truck crossed the highway center line and struck their car head-on.
Mrs. Smith took the brunt of the impact. She was horribly injured, and airlifted from crash site to a local trauma hospital.
Other family members were also hurt. Sadly, the family dog did not survive.
The truck driver who struck their car had been drinking. He was driving a company truck.
At first, the insurance company said they were not liable. They tried to stick the Smith family with the huge medical bills from the car crash.
Then, lawyer Kevin Coluccio investigated the company.
The Smith’s attorney and his team found out that the truck driver had a history of drinking and then driving the company vehicle. They learned that other people at the company—including his supervisors—would go out and drink with the truck driver. The company knew about his dangerous drinking and driving.
After this investigation, the company’s insurance changed their position.
Most of the family recovered from the crash injuries. But Mrs. Smith had a long hospital stay, and months of rehabilitation. Through her hard work and the support of her family, she has made a successful recovery, although she has some permanent disabilities.
Attorney Kevin Coluccio obtained a 1.6 million dollar settlement to provide the family with necessary resources for her care, and to hold the company and the truck driver accountable.