A car accident in Waco is a traumatic experience. Whether you’re injured in a multi-car pileup on I-35 or rear-ended on Valley Mills Drive, you need to know what to do after your car accident.

As the smoke and dust from the airbags dissipate, you begin to feel the pain of your injuries. Confused and in shock, you hope the crash did not badly hurt you or any passengers.

When negligent people cause accidents that you cannot control, knowing what to do after an accident contact an experienced car accident attorney in Waco can go a long way to protect both you and your passengers from further damage or harm.

3 Things You Should Do at an Accident Scene

  • Stay calm and remain at the scene. It’s normal to feel scared, overwhelmed, worried, and panicked during and after a car accident in Waco, but stay as calm as possible for the well-being of yourself and those around you. If the accident injured anyone, call 911. Move your vehicle away from potential dangers and remain at the scene until the police or EMS arrives.
  • Document the accident. Gather enough evidence for a personal injury case. Take pictures of your car and the other cars involved, as well as any property damage, to reconstruct how an accident happened. Even if you don’t know whether you will file an insurance claim, you may not get a second chance to take photos, talk to witnesses, and document the accident like you can at the accident scene. Make a note of where you were going, the weather conditions, and any injuries to you and your passengers.
  • Exchange information. According to Texas law, every driver in an accident must exchange contact information, including the names, addresses, telephone numbers, driver’s license numbers, insurance information, and the VINs of the vehicles.

3 Things You Should Not Do at the Scene of an Accident

  • Never leave an accident scene. Fleeing an accident scene can result in serious criminal charges. In addition, leaving before exchanging information severely limits your ability to prove the other driver caused the accident.
  • Do not admit guilt. Accidents can happen in the blink of an eye, and some people instinctively want to apologize and take responsibility for the incident. This is a mistake. Never talk about fault. Instead, focus on injuries, gather evidence, and exchange information. Even saying that you’re sorry can imply liability on your part, which may damage your claim. The other person can use any admission such as “I didn’t see you” or “You came out of nowhere” to shift the blame onto you. An insurance adjuster or medical provider will use anything you say against you and may result in a claim denial from an insurance company.
  • Avoid approaching intoxicated or aggressive drivers. If an aggressive or intoxicated driver injured you, just check on their well-being and exchange the required information if you can do so safely. Never get out of your car if you are the victim of road rash. Instead, call 911 right away and explain the situation. If you do come across someone who appears impaired, exercise extreme caution and keep your distance as drunk drivers can behave erratically and are hard to reason with.

What to Do After an Accident in Waco

You still must do a lot of important work that can influence the value of your case.

Report the accident. To report an accident in Waco, Texas, you can call the Waco Police Department at (254) 750-7500. You can also report an accident online through the Waco Police Department website.

When reporting an accident, provide the following information:

  • The location of the accident
  • The time of the accident
  • The type of accident (e.g., vehicle collision, pedestrian accident, etc.)
  • The number of vehicles and/or pedestrians involved
  • The extent of any injuries
  • Any other relevant information
  • If you are able, you should also take photos of the accident scene.

Once you report the accident, the Waco Police Department will send an officer to investigate the scene. The officer will take statements from the involved parties and gather any other evidence. The officer will then complete an accident report.

You will receive a copy of the accident report from the Waco Police Department. You can also request a copy of the accident report online through the Waco Police Department website.

Seek medical attention. After a car accident in Waco, seek immediate medical attention even if you don’t feel injured. After crashes, people may later find out that they sustained hidden or latent injuries. They may experience headaches, dizziness, nausea, vision problems, or unusual mood changes after an accident, which should not go undiagnosed.

Any delay in treatment may undermine your claim. Furthermore, a documented medical examination on the day of the accident helps your claim. A doctor will recommend treatment, therapies, or any surgeries if necessary for any injuries.

Seek legal advice. In Waco, Texas, you only have two years to bring a lawsuit after a car crash. Hire an experienced car accident attorney soon after your accident to protect your rights and get the most out of any potential settlement offer. If the date passes to file a claim for your damages, you cannot recover compensation from the financially responsible party.

An experienced Waco injury lawyer will review and evaluate all the evidence related to your case. An attorney will work with your doctors to make sure you get the treatment you need for your injuries moving forward.

If you cannot afford to pay for medical treatment, your attorney may find a medical provider who will accept a medical lien instead of full payment at the time of service. This means that you won’t have to pay your medical expenses until after your case settles.

Your lawyer will also draft an insurance demand letter to provide you with enough reimbursement and compensation to cover your existing and future medical bills and other costs associated with the accident.

When hiring a car accident lawyer to represent you, pay attention to qualifications such as experience, courtroom skills, and proven results.

The Types of Damages You May Receive After an Accident in Waco

Lawyer reviewing car accident damages with a car and gavel symbolizing legal authority and judgement in Waco claims.Although the physical pain associated with car accidents can seem unbearable at times, victims should prepare for the financial losses they may incur.

A lawsuit allows you to recover those costs from the at-fault party. The amount recovered in a claim depends on whether it settles out of court with an insurance adjuster or goes before a jury in court to determine your compensation.

You may recover these damages after an accident:

Medical expenses. Medical bills from an accident can take a huge toll on a person’s finances.

Medical expenses include any costs related to medical treatment, such as:

  • Ambulance fees
  • Hospital stays
  • Doctor visits
  • Medications
  • Medical devices
  • Physical therapy
  • Rehabilitation treatments

If the accident causes long-term or permanent injuries, you may recover damages for future medical expenses. You want to get better and to achieve 100 percent reimbursement for all your necessary medical care due to an injury caused by another party.

Lost income. After a car accident, take the necessary time needed for recovery. Unfortunately, this often means missing out on the income that your family needs to survive. The money lost from missed days and hours at work is part of your compensation. Seeking lost income helps those in need get back on their feet after a distressing car accident.

If you cannot work due to your injuries, you may recover damages for lost income. This includes any income that you would have earned had the accident not injured you, as well as any future earning capacity you lost.

Pain and suffering. Not only do pain and suffering cause physical damage and distress, but a person’s emotional well-being can suffer.

These damages compensate you for the physical and emotional pain and suffering you experienced because of the accident. Pain and suffering can include physical discomfort, mental anguish, and loss of enjoyment of life. The mere fear of getting in another accident can lead to the avoidance of any activity such as driving or even getting in a vehicle.

Living in this constant state of fear and pain can impede everyday life activities like going to work or taking part in social engagements. Discuss these physical and emotional traumas with your lawyer so you can recover full compensation for them.

Loss of companionship. Car accidents can cause a loss of consortium when injuries interfere with their normal interpersonal relationships.

In some cases, a life-threatening accident can cause individuals to withdraw from society. They may find it difficult to engage with others, and as a result, their relationships may suffer. This can affect previously social and outgoing individuals, as they may struggle to adjust to their new reality and find themselves feeling disconnected and lonely.

Compensation for those who have experienced a loss of companionship in an accident can help them heal. While no amount of money can fully restore what a person lost, it can provide a measure of financial security and peace of mind during a difficult time.

The damages that a person can recover will depend on the facts of their particular case, and not all victims will recover every damage listed here.

Get the Right Legal Help From a Waco Car Accident Lawyer

Car Accident Lawyer in Waco, TX

Ted R. Lorenz, Waco Car Accident Lawyer

Protect yourself after an accident and hire a Waco car accident lawyer. The right firm for you will possess the resources necessary to process a claim against big insurance companies, from gathering evidence to negotiating a settlement or, if needed,  fighting your case in court.

Furthermore, an experienced Waco personal injury attorney can answer any questions that might arise throughout the process.

After a car accident, don’t hesitate to seek counsel from a knowledgeable car accident lawyer who will provide you with sound legal advice and guidance.

Click for free case review