After you get into an accident the last thing you want to do is wait for the police to come.
But if you don’t it can kill your case and this is why…
How many times have you met someone who said they agree with you on things and later you find out they don’t?
How much trust would you put into a perfect stranger, let alone a perfect stranger who was so distracted, or in a rush, or doing something else with their mind that they hit you, out of the blue, while you were headed somewhere you wanted to be?
The reality is, it happens way too often, that people who say one thing at the scene of an accident say another thing later on.
And that could cost you thousands of dollars, why?
You may be asking yourself, doesn’t truth and justice win the day? How can people act like that and get away with it? It just doesn’t seem right or make sense that that could happen.
Well, unfortunately, justice is not oftentimes served without a lot of cost when dealing with the law and insurance companies.
In the case of a personal injury suit, cost to you generally means time, but it can also mean, if there is any indication that you were at fault in the case given the facts, then there is a possibility of doubt as to whether you or the other driver was at fault.
In a car accident case you need to have a few x’s crossed out in order to get paid for your medical care, pain and suffering and other economic damages such as lost wages or diminished earning capacity.
One of those x’s is who was at fault. The best scenario is for the other person to be completely at fault. That means whatever damages you claim as a result of the accident will be due to the other person, entirely, and the insurance company should pay you in full for that.
If, however, you were at fault at all, then your financial recovery will be less than 100% and, even more, your insurance company will have to pay the other driver for whatever percentage you were at fault in causing their damages. While this is dependent on the state laws which govern the case (meaning in which state the accident took place), essentially, you may not recover in full for your damages.
The best, most-trustworthy, right out-of-the-gate, easiest way to avoid this situation (assuming you were not the one at fault) is to wait for the police to show up. It doesn’t matter if they take five minutes or five hours or whether the other person wants to leave the scene of the accident, wait for them now or face the challenge of proving you were not at fault at a later date.
Once the police arrive they take statements from both drivers and any witnesses that were willing to stay and tell the police what they saw. The police person then reconstructs the accident based on where the cars are located and based on the witness statements. They usually draw a representation of what happened and then ticket the at-fault driver.
Assuming that driver was not you…that statement from the police officer is your golden ticket to get passed the “whose fault was it” road block and jump you to the amount of money you should be paid for your injuries.
That jump is huge and exactly why you need to wait for that police person to show up.
It will make all the difference in your case!
If you have questions about a car accident case contact a lawyer for more information and the next steps.