After you have been involved in a car accident, we understand that the first thing that you want to know is if everyone in your car is safe and if you are at risk of any additional accidents or collisions while you are waiting for emergency responders to arrive at the scene. After the initial shock of the crash, you will need to start collecting a variety of information in order to make sure that you are able to get the compensation that you need, and the legal help that you will require as you are taking these complicated next steps.
One of the most frustrating things about being injured in a car accident is that you are expected to handle all of these issues at the same time that you are trying to recover from serious injuries and work through some significant pain, which is why a lot of people opt for working with a Fresno car accident lawyer even if they don't think that they will be filing a lawsuit. This could be something for you to consider, especially if you want to focus on your recovery so you can get your life back in order as soon as possible.
Once the (literal and figurative) dust has settled, there are going to be a lot of steps you will need to take in order to make sure that you are treated fairly as you try to seek compensation for your personal and property damage. For starters, you will need a copy of the incident report filed by the police who arrived on the scene, which will document all relevant details such as traffic violations that took place, whether or not there were any arrests, statements by everyone involved, and more.
In addition to a police or accident report, seeking out eyewitness accounts can be exceptionally helpful, especially if there were people who witnessed the other driver before they came into your sight. There may be people who can attest that they were driving recklessly, texting, or something else that you didn't see before the collision.
One of the first steps in the process of seeking damages is to make contact with the responsible party's insurance company to begin a claim. You will be assigned to an insurance adjuster, who will investigate your case before coming back to you with a settlement offer. If you do not know what you actually deserve for this situation, then the settlement offer may seem fair and appealing. You can be certain that it never is. Insurance companies rely on the fact that you are in a stressful situation and that you are unfamiliar with the claims process, and will offer you a sum that is nowhere near what you really deserve.
When you are working with a lawyer, they will be able to go through all of the details and specifics of your situation, including things like your financial situation beyond the accident, the emotional and intangible injuries that you have suffered, and more. When you are able to approach an insurance company and tell them that you know what you deserve, you can be certain that you will have a much different experience than if you were simply relying on them to give you what they felt was fair.