What Happens When The Unexpected Happens and you are the Victim of a Car Accident?

Don’t Panic. Everyone at some time in their lives finds themselves as the victim of someone’s negligence, often by a distracted driver. If you are a driver, passenger or pedestrian, this is bound to occur. If you are the victim of a rear end collision, side swipe, head-on collision, a hit while stopped or stopping, walking or hit in crosswalk by a vehicle, here are things you should know:

  1. After impact most people feel shaken, lightheaded, dizzy and cannot comprehend what happened.
  2. Call the police.
  3. Even though many people often do not realize that they are injured at the scene of the accident, especially if they are not bleeding or are not in severe pain (adrenaline often can mask pain), they should not refuse medical help at the scene. It is often advisable to go to the hospital to get checked out or be evaluated by a medical professional shortly afterwards. The reason for this is that swelling, stiffness or internal bleeding can develop over the next few days.
  4. Everyone has a cell phone with a camera. take pictures of the vehicles involved at the scene. Take pictures of the street or intersection where it happened. If you are too injured to do so at the scene, take them as soon as you can or a friend or family member can do so for you.
  5. It is important to identify witnesses at the scene and get their names and addresses since they often do not wait for the police to arrive. Assuming the offending driver has a different version of the facts, witnesses can tip the scale as they are not interested in the outcome of the claim. They generally carry more credibility than those involved in the accident.
  6. Report the accident to your own insurance company immediately so an early investigation can be conducted. It is also important to get the no fault claim number so that all doctors and hospitals that examined or treated you can timely send the bills so you don’t get stick having to pay them yourself. This includes the ambulance company that brought you to the emergency room. You will need to file a no-fault application and it is useful to have the police report which has most of the facts needed. Your attorney can help get this report as it is frequently filed online and assist you in filing the no-fault application with you insurer.
  7. Give a brief basic factual statement to your own insurance company. It is often beneficial to contact a good lawyer early in order to represent your interest. Advise anyone who reached out to discuss your accident to speak with you lawyer. Often the other drivers insurer will send investigator to interview you. They try to obtain adverse statement about how the accident happened, which can be unhelpful since they may not be accurate or complete. Retain a lawyer to handle all the communication to avoid mistakes. While you are trying to be helpful, you may be unintentionally or intentionally misled.
  8. To guarantee maximum recovery to compensate you fairly for you injuries, you out to be represented by a skilled attorney. He/she is the protector of your rights/interests and will advocate only for you. There are no conflicting interests when you have a good attorney spear-heading your case. Insurers, even your own, are motivated to save money and make profits, which may not be in your best interests.
  9. After consulting with a, reputable, Stern Law Firm attorney by phone or email, it will be time to set-up a face to face meeting. This is usually an in person meeting convenient to the client, however, given the Covid-19 virus, we can do these meeting by Facetime, Skype or Zoom.
  10. As a client of the Stern Law Firm, you will be zealously represented from day one. We will handle everything for you, including the courtesy of making sure all necessary papers are timely filed. We will fight for your recovery so you can concentrate on getting betting and healing.
  11. As a client of the Stern Law Firm, you are entitled to know what is going on with you case and we engourage you to stay in constant contact. As a boutique law firm, we believe in direct contact with our clients. When you call us, you will speak with us or our paralegal. We are not a factory and you are not a number. We will often share our cell phone number so that you don’t have to go through this alone. You can contact us directly with an emerging changes in medical conditions and we will advise you of litigation status so you will not be kept in the dark. We are he to answer any of your questions to avoid the uncertainty of now knowing what is going on.
  12. Best of all, with personal injury cases, we do not charge an hourly fee, like the defense lawyers generally do. Instead, we work on a contingency gee and get paid only when you collect your money. If you don’t collect, neither do we. If you lose, and that does not happen often, we do not charge you a fee. You are only responsible for case disbursements.
  13. You will be part of our client family at the Stern Law Firm, and we will guide and prepare your every step of the way toward a full and fair recovery. We have a hard fought reputation for recovering substantially more than others for the same injuries because we are tenacious and we love to fight for you. Remember, our biggest source of clients comes from referrals by our for and current satisfied clients who have enjoyed the fruits of our labor.

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