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What To Do After A Minor Car Accident

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A Metairie Car Accident Lawyer Explains How You Might Handle a Minor Car Accident

Even if there are no obvious major injuries or damages, car accidents are stressful situations that can lead to long term consequences if not handled properly. Prepare yourself now by taking a look at this advice from an experienced Metairie car accident lawyer.

Blaine Barrilleaux has been serving Metairie, LA and surrounding areas for almost 20 years, so he knows a thing or two about car accidents. In pain? Call Blaine now at 504-218-4443

Make Sure Your Minor Auto Accident Actually is a Minor Car Accident

A common mistake that people make when they’re in a car accident is assuming that the accident is minor if there aren’t any glaring injuries or damage at the scene. But as you’ll see, it’s possible, and fairly common, for the full extent of the accident to reveal itself days, or even weeks, after the accident occurs.

The first thing to do after a minor car accident is to make sure that it is, in fact, minor.

It's not uncommon for head, back, and neck pain to start hours or days after an accident, so keep an eye out for any lingering effects of the collision.

Get Checked Out

If you or your passengers are injured in the accident, call 911 and get checked out by paramedics.

Even if you don’t notice any signs of injury immediately following the collision, it’s not a bad idea to get checked out by a doctor just in case.

When people are in a car accident, the shock of the impact (even a minor one) causes adrenaline levels to spike, which can inhibit the body’s pain response. So don’t assume that you’re okay if you don’t feel pain while you’re on scene. It’s not uncommon for head, back, and neck pain to start hours or days after an accident, so keep an eye out for any lingering effects of the collision.

If you do suffer an injury, a personal injury lawyer will be able to help you prove that it was caused by the accident so you’re able to pursue compensation.

Have Your Car Checked Out

Car mechanic working on engine - Source: Pixabay: Ryan DokaEven if your car shows little or no signs of damage from a collision, there may be hidden problems that show themselves later. Common hidden damage includes issues with the:

  • Steering
  • Suspension
  • Axles
  • Drivetrain
  • Brakes

Be sure to take your car to a body repair shop soon after the accident to make sure there’s nothing you may have missed during a visual inspection.

Fortunately, car collision repair shops are used to handling these situations, and some will even help you navigate the insurance process, billing the insurance company directly and helping to confirm that the damage was caused by the accident.

Of course, even the best body shop won’t replace a skilled Metairie car accident lawyer when it comes to pleading your case and getting you the compensation you deserve, but the more experts you have in your corner the better.

If You Get Into a Minor Car Accident

Emotions can run high and it’s often hard to think straight after an auto accident, so it’s understandable that many people panic and don’t know what to do when it happens. Just follow these simple guidelines if you’re even in a car accident, and it will prevent a lot of unnecessary complications.

What now? Steps to follow after a minor car accident. Move to safety, call the police, exchange information, take pictures, call your insurance company.

Move to Safety

The first thing to think about after a car accident is the safety of you and your passengers, and preventing further injury. If your vehicle is drivable, pull to the side of the road or into a parking lot to avoid blocking traffic and possibly causing a secondary accident.

If the vehicle isn’t operable, though, leave it where it is and move yourself and your passengers to the side of the road or a sidewalk.

Make sure the engine is shut off and move away from the car right away if you see or smell gasoline.

Call the Police

Police car lights - Source: PexelsJust about any personal injury lawyer will agree that it’s a good idea to fill out a police report as soon as possible, even for minor accidents. This allows you to get a clear record of the accident on file before memories fade and stories change.

In the state of Louisiana, you’re legally required to call the police if you’re involved in a car accident that causes injury, death, or property damage over $500. Even if your accident doesn’t meet those criteria, you may still be required to file a written statement, so it’s often a good idea to call the police to be on the safe side. 

Exchange Information

Even though you may feel on edge after an accident, it’s important to stay calm when dealing with the other driver, and exchange information. Take pictures of their driver’s license and insurance card – you’ll need it to give to your insurance company.

Take pictures

Take pictures at the scene of the accident if it’s possible to do so safely. Helpful things to document are:

  • The position of the vehicles
  • The current road and weather conditions
  • Damage (or lack of damage) to each vehicle involved

The more information you collect about the accident, the better positioned you’ll be to fight for compensation if need be.

Call Your Insurance Company

Every car insurance company is different, but each one requires you to report a car accident within a certain amount of time, even if it’s minor.

When it comes time to file an insurance claim, a Metairie car accident lawyer can help you navigate the process.

Our Metairie Injury Attorneys Handle Property Damage Claims and Injury Cases 

If you’ve been involved in a car accident in the Metairie, LA area, then you need a Metairie car accident lawyer who can help you fight for compensation. Don’t get stuck with the cost of injuries and property damage that weren’t your fault.

In pain? Call Blaine now at 504-218-4443.

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