Car accidents can leave you suffering from severe damages that can negatively impact your life and financial stability. In order to receive financial compensation, you’ll need to file a claim against the negligent driver responsible for your accident.
When you file a claim, you’ll need substantial evidence to prove both negligence and fault. One of the best ways to get proof for your car accident claim is to take pictures, especially right after your accident. Our lawyers explain the steps you should follow.
Always File a Claim for Your Car Accident
Did you know that 2020 had the highest auto fatality accident rates in the past 13 years despite a decrease in total miles driven? Unfortunately, with millions of car accidents happening each year, not every car accident victim receives compensation. One of the main reasons why is a lack of evidence.
If you don’t have strong evidence to support the claim you file, it will be extremely difficult to win the compensation that reflects your damages. Therefore, it’s critical to ensure that you always document everything with photographs and video. Even if something seems irrelevant or trivial, take a picture anyway. Every single picture will help you immensely.
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Why Pictures Are Important
When investigating the accident, attorneys, officers, and insurance adjusters look at the types of damages, such as dents, scratches, and paint marks, from your car to determine what took place and who is at fault. This is why taking pictures is essential. Instead of relying on descriptions and text, you can utilize images and even videos to ensure nothing gets left up to the imagination.
Steps to Follow When Taking Pictures
There are several steps you should follow when taking pictures. It’s best to follow these steps so that you don’t end up having photos that don’t add much value or benefit to your case.
Take Accident Photos of All Vehicles
After you’ve been involved in a wreck, if and whenever possible, take car accident photos or have someone else take pictures at the accident scene. In case stories change or witness accounts conflict, auto accident photos may provide the best proof of what actually took place. Take pictures before moving or relocating the vehicles and, if possible, while waiting for the officers to arrive.
Take plenty of photos, from every angle, of the vehicles involved in the accident. Remember to take your time when taking pictures. If you rush or move too fast, you may end up with blurry images that amount to nothing. For the closeup photos, pay especially close attention to the point of impact and areas of damage.
Take Photos of the Scene of the Accident
People often neglect how important photos of the scene of the accident are. Taking accident scene photos will also help you to capture the weather and road conditions at the time of the accident. Also, take pictures of the roadway before and after the vehicles are removed, and be sure to capture any skid marks or property damage.
Take Photos of the Other Driver’s Information
Ask the other driver for their driver’s license information and auto insurance card. Take a picture of both cards. Should the at-fault driver agree to handle everything, have them write, sign, and date a statement to that effect. Sometimes, the other drivers’ offer to fix their mistakes turns out to be too good to be true, so it’s best to ensure you have a signed document.
Take a photo of the statement in case you misplace it. If the other driver is unwilling to produce the information or statement, notify the police and wait on an investigating officer to collect the information for the report.
Take Photos of the Police Report Information
After a car accident gets reported by the police, the officer can provide you with a report or item number. You will need this information to obtain the police report. Write the number down and take a picture of it in case you misplace it. This information is especially vital to your case. Tracking the police report will also help you gather other crucial evidence down the road.
What If I Live in a No-Fault State?
If you live in a no-fault state, you should still take pictures following the steps above. Remember, even if you have to deal with your own insurance company, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have evidence ready. If you meet certain thresholds, there is a chance you can file for damages at the negligent driver’s expense, even if your accident occurred in a no-fault state.
What Should I Do After I Take Pictures?
After you take pictures of your accident, keep them safe and get medical treatment. Once you receive medical treatment, talk to a lawyer as soon as possible. Even though you have critical evidence for your car accident claim, fighting and negotiating with the insurance company can be extremely difficult without professional legal representation.
If you don’t have any experience with car accidents or personal injury law, don’t try to fight for your settlement alone. Our car accident lawyers represent and serve clients in several states, and we are confident we can help you get the settlement you deserve. While you recover from your injuries, our attorneys will work hard to get you financial compensation.
Talk to Our Car Accident Lawyers Today
Documenting everything and hiring the right personal injury attorney is essential to winning a settlement. If you’ve been in a car accident through no fault of your own, contact the car accident lawyers at Morris Bart, LLC immediately. If you have any questions, call today or fill out our online form to schedule an appointment. We are available 24/7.
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