What Should I Do After Being in a Rear-End Accident in Texas?
After getting rear-ended, you could be left with injuries and vehicle damage that you need help recovering for. In most rear-end accident cases it’s pretty clear that the car in front was the victim and didn’t share any fault in causing the accident. It is important to know what steps you need to take right away and over the next few days to get the damages you need for your accident.
First and foremost, if you have any injuries, get them treated right away by calling for an ambulance. Also call 911 for a police officer to create an accident report. Additionally, take your own steps to collect evidence. In the few days following the accident, follow up on any injuries. Then, call an attorney for help filing an insurance claim or lawsuit for damages.
For a free case review, call the Texas car accident injury lawyers at The Queenan Law Firm today. Our number is (817) 476-1797.
First Steps to Take After Being Rear-Ended in Texas
When you are involved in a rear-end accident, acting quickly is important.
Get to Safety and Call 911
Immediately after your crash, the first things to do are to call 911 and get to safety. Once you are safe, you can begin to assess your injuries – many of which might be masked by the adrenaline of the crash. If you need to move your car out of the way of traffic, you might need to do that immediately as well (if your car is in safe working condition).
Get Medical Care
Once you are to safety and the EMTs have had a chance to assess your injuries, they’ll let you know if you should go to the hospital or whether you can stay at the accident scene. You should accept any first aid from the EMTs and follow all medical advice about going to the hospital or seeking additional care, even if it means you won’t be available to collect evidence at the scene of the accident.
If you can stay at the scene, you should take steps to collect other important evidence. As mentioned, responding police officers can create a police report for your accident. This will contain much of the information you need, but you should always double up and collect this information yourself. Get a pad of paper or use your cell phone to take note of the following information:
- Where the accident happened, including a nearby address, the street name, the direction of travel (e.g., southbound), the nearest cross street, the closest mile marker, and any other relevant details
- Who was involved, including the name and contact info of all drivers, passengers, and potential witnesses
- The insurance info for all drivers involved (make sure to share your info as well)
- What cars were involved, including the make, model, color, and license plate number
- The current weather conditions
- The current lighting conditions
- Any relevant traffic signs or signals
- Where the vehicles were damaged (i.e., the rear of your car and the front of the other car)
If you can, take pictures of the scene as well. Pictures and videos on your phone can be incredibly helpful for piecing together how the accident happened, where the cars settled afterwards, and who was at fault.
Especially with rear-end accidents, if you have no other damage except to the rear of your car, getting photographic evidence of that can help your Texas car accident lawyer show that you didn’t do anything to cause the crash.
Following Up After a Rear-End Car Accident in Texas
If you needed immediate medical treatment and could not collect the evidence listed above, getting a copy of the police report will be important to building your case. However, it usually takes a few days for that report to become available, so it is best to focus on other steps in the meantime:
Collect Additional Evidence
If you can, you might want to go back to the scene and get any additional photos of the debris on the ground or where the accident happened. Especially if there are street signs hidden behind trees, blind corners, or other problematic things that could have helped cause the crash, getting photos of them can help paint a full picture of what happened.
Following Up with Medical Care
Following up with medical care is vital in a rear-end car accident case. Injuries to the neck and back, such as whiplash, are incredibly common in rear-end crashes. These injuries might not be apparent at first, and they only begin to show when you wake up the next morning or in the next few days after a crash. Seeing a doctor to follow up about the injuries can create a record of when the pain started to help connect that injury to the car accident. If you wait too long to see a doctor, the defendant driver will claim that your injury could have occurred after the accident and that you should not get paid for the back or neck pain.
Calling a Lawyer
Calling a Texas car accident lawyer in the first few days after a car crash will also help get your case started and put you in a good position to win your claim. Your Dallas car accident attorneys can help with all of the following issues, working to create a strong case:
- Follow up with witnesses and drivers to collect statements and set up possible future depositions
- Follow up with officers to obtain police report/accident report information
- Track your medical care and help you create a journal or other record of your pain and your recovery progress
- Negotiate with insurance companies for proper payment
- Help you track what steps need to be taken for vehicle appraisals, medical evaluations, and more
- File a lawsuit
Ultimately, many cases do end up going to court if the at-fault driver and their insurance company refuse to pay your damages in full through an insurance claim. Your Fort Worth car accident lawyer can help you understand if that is necessary and represent you throughout the entire process.
For Help, Call Our Texas Car Accident Lawyers Today
For a free case evaluation, call The Queenan Law Firm’s Irving car accident attorneys today at (817) 476-1797.