A road traffic accident is one of the most common reasons for incurring a personal injury. If you are injured in traffic incident of any kind, then the next course of action isn’t always obvious. In the moment, you will likely be frightened, in pain, and not worrying about any potential litigation in the future. Still, it’s important to have some idea of what to expect after you’ve been in a road traffic accident. While there are no definitive rules for what you should do after a road traffic accident, it’s always good to be prepared with a bit of knowledge.
1. Determining Fault
In order for a road traffic accident claim to be successful, you have to prove that the other driver was at fault. If the other driver broke the Highway Code, then it is safe to assume that you can prove fault. That being said, it helps to have evidence to back up your claim. This can be difficult if the injuries sustained are critical, but if your injuries are relatively minor, try taking pictures of the scene. Ask any passengers or nearby witnesses to snap a few photographs as well.
2. Dealing with the Police
In serious traffic accidents, you can expect the police to show up at some point. Maintain contact with the officer or officers who came to the scene of the accident. Make sure to also get the incident reference number so that your case can be more easily accessed.
3. Communicating with Witnesses
We mentioned above that it’s in your best interest to ask witnesses to document the scene. It’s also important to maintain their contact information. They can be helpful in corroborating your story to the police and they may also be instrumental during any personal injury lawsuits.
4. Waiting to File a Claim
After your road traffic accident, you have three years from the date of the accident to file a personal injury claim for compensation. If you were underage at the time of the accident, you have until your 21st birthday to file a claim. In almost every case, it is in your interest to file the claim and get the proceedings started as soon as possible. Witness testimony and physical evidence will be more readily available if you start the claim sooner.
5. Claiming Compensation
There are numerous different compensation claims that you can make in the event of a road traffic accident. The severity of the personal injury is obviously the first factor that goes into your compensation claim. You can also add financial losses like the cost of medicine, the cost of missing work, and the cost of repairing the vehicle. Transport costs, childcare costs and even psychological injuries can be added on to your compensation claim. Of course, legal costs will often be taken care of as well.
No one wants to get into a road traffic accident, but it’s important to know what to do and what to expect if one should occur. Although you may not be at your most coherent soon after an accident, you can still set the processes in motion for securing your compensation claim.
Harry Price is a writer and freelance journalist, who loves to travel to new destinations. He loves to soak up the culture, cuisine and explore the region – using his findings as inspiration for his writing.