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What to do immediately after an accident

Experiencing a personal injury accident can be a life-altering event.

Knowing the right steps to take immediately after an accident to protect your rights is essential. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll provide a step-by-step guide to help you navigate the aftermath of a personal injury accident.

Step 1: Seek Medical Attention

Your health should be your top priority. Immediately after an accident, whether it’s a road traffic accident, slip and fall, workplace incident, or any other type of personal injury, seek medical attention. Even if your injuries seem minor, some injuries may not manifest symptoms right away, and prompt medical evaluation can help diagnose and treat potential issues before they worsen. Document all medical visits, as this documentation will be important if you decide to pursue a personal injury claim.

Step 2: Report the Accident

Depending on the circumstances, you may need to report the accident to the appropriate authorities. For example, in a car accident, contact the police and file a report. In a workplace accident, notify your employer and complete an incident report. Documenting the accident is crucial, as it provides an official record of what happened.

Step 3: Gather Evidence

If you are physically able to do so, gather as much evidence as possible. Take photographs of the accident scene, your injuries, and any property damage. Collect witness statements and contact information, which may be crucial later on.

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Step 4: Exchange Information

Exchange contact and insurance information with all involved parties. If you were in a motor vehicle accident, this includes the other driver’s name, contact information, and insurance details. For other accidents, obtain the contact information of the property owner or responsible party.

Step 5: Notify Insurance Companies

Notify your insurance company about the accident as soon as possible. Provide them with accurate and detailed information about the incident. This is a necessary step, even if you were not at fault, as it helps protect your rights.

Step 6: Consult a Personal Injury Lawyer

If you anticipate long-term medical treatment, or if the accident was down to someone else’s negligence, it’s advisable to consult with a personal injury lawyer. Personal injury lawyers specialise in helping accident victims pursue compensation for their injuries and losses. They can assess the merits of your personal injury case and guide you through the legal process.

Particularly if your injuries are serious, the personal injury team at Ward Hadaway have extensive experience in handling cases involving catastrophic injuries, such as spinal cord injuries, traumatic brain injuries, or amputations. These cases often require significant expertise and resources to ensure you receive fair compensation for the long-term impact on your life.

If you believe you have a personal injury claim and want to find out more about the process, view our article on the personal injury claim process or contract our personal injury solicitors to discuss your case in more detail.

Please note that this briefing is designed to be informative, not advisory and represents our understanding of English law and practice as at the date indicated. We would always recommend that you should seek specific guidance on any particular legal issue.

This page may contain links that direct you to third party websites. We have no control over and are not responsible for the content, use by you or availability of those third party websites, for any products or services you buy through those sites or for the treatment of any personal information you provide to the third party.

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Kerri Kershaw

Director | Personal Injury

+44 (0) 330 137 3289

+44 (0)771 507 7768

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Carole Ward

Associate | Personal Injury

+44 (0) 330 137 3290

+44 (0)791 257 9474

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