Accidents occur all the time on the Kensington Expressway, in Buffalo. You see damaged cars pulled over on the shoulder and you feel sorry for the poor people. Just because you are a good, careful driver, it does not mean a reckless driver cannot hit you. What do you do? You can get advice regarding the crash aftermath from an attorney
The ideal is to have a Buffalo car accident attorney come to assist you at the scene. However, finding one available on such short notice could be challenging. Therefore, in the following lines, we will explain everything you need to know and do in case of an accident.
Buffalo Accident Scene Dos
How you act at the accident scene influences the outcome, whether or not you recover your losses. Here is what you should and should not do in order to ensure the best outcome:
- Do stop at the accident scene or as close to it as possible. It is a legal obligation, and breaking it could bring about penalties and even jail time.
- Do make sure that the injured receive medical attention. It does not matter who was injured. Sometimes, receiving medical assistance with a few minutes earlier can make the difference between life and death.
- Do provide your data to the other parties involved. The law required you to give your name, address, and insurance details. You should also collect this data from the other parties involved.
- Do report the accident to the Buffalo police if the property damages exceed $1,000 or people were injured. If they do not come to the scene to investigate and file a report, you will have to report the accident yourself. It should be filed in writing with the NY DMV, using Form MV-104, within 10 days.
- Do contact a car accident lawyer. Recovering your losses will not be easy. It will take time, effort, and endless formalities. Moreover, no matter if you claim your losses from your own insurer (as per New York’s no-fault insurance law),from the party at fault, or from their insurer, you should not expect them to just pay out. You will have to prove your case, negotiate, and basically force the money out of their pockets.
- Do gather evidence from the scene. In order to recover your losses, you will have to document them. You will also have to prove how the accident occurred. You will need evidence, such as photos, videos, witness statements, etc. Make sure you collect all the available evidence from the accident scene. It will not be available for long.
Buffalo Accident Scene Don’ts
If you manage to talk to a Buffalo car accident attorney from the accident scene, they will surely warn you not to do certain things. Here are the most important of them.
- Do not assume fault. Perhaps you feel somehow responsible for the accident. Perhaps you wish you did more to avoid it. Do not say that out loud. Expect everything you say or do to be used against you. It is better to stay quiet, listen to what others have to say, and focus on the tasks above.
- Do not get into conflicts. People often lose their temper under stress. They blame others, curse, yell, and maybe even resort to violence. You do not want such occurrences interfering with your chances of recovering your losses, so avoid them. Be polite and discrete and focus on your own interests.
- Do not give any statements, accept settlements, or sign right waivers. Depending on the value of the damages involved, insurance agents or the party at fault may approach you and ask you to sign various documents. They may ask you to give a statement releasing them of any responsibility, etc. Ask for time to study the documents or tell them you will not discuss or sign anything without having your Buffalo car accident lawyer present.
- Do not delay contacting a Buffalo car accident lawyer. First, the statute of limitations only allows three years for personal injury lawsuits. Your lawyer will need time to prepare the lawsuit, so they should start working on the case much sooner. Then, evidence gets lost and people forget how things happened. Finally, the sooner you take action, the sooner you will obtain your compensation.
Get in Touch with a Buffalo Auto Accident Attorney Now!
If the worst has already happened, you need to act fast and smart to protect your rights and make sure you will get a fair compensation. Call our office and schedule a FREE consultation with one of our Buffalo car accident lawyers. They will provide all the information, advice, and support you need.