A low-speed car crash is where the cars are traveling at a slow speed and the damage to the vehicles is relatively minor. However, this does not mean that the victims will suffer “minor” injuries. Whiplash, traumatic brain injuries, and spinal cord injuries are just a few of the long-term injuries caused by these collisions.
If you were hurt in a low-speed car accident caused by a negligent driver, you are entitled to compensation for your medical expenses, lost wages, property damage, and pain and suffering under Virginia law. Unfortunately, the insurance company for the negligent driver could try to deny your claim or pay you less than you deserve. This is common in a low-speed crash. Here are four crucial steps you need to take to protect your right to damages.
Call the Police
You may be tempted not to call the police if the damage to your auto was minimal and you do not believe that you suffered any serious injuries. However, this would be a big mistake. The police officer will investigate your crash and write a police report containing helpful information, such as the cause of the collision, who was at fault, and traffic citations issued that can help you prove the other motorist was to blame for your accident.
Get Medical Treatment
You should be examined by a doctor within 48 hours of your low-speed crash—even if you do not believe you were hurt. These accidents often cause hidden injuries where the symptoms do not develop for days or longer after the collision.
You protect your health by seeking prompt medical care. You can also defend against claims by the insurance adjuster that your injuries were caused by another incident or are not serious by taking this important step.
You have the burden of proving the other driver’s negligence, the seriousness of your injuries, and the amount of compensation you should receive. You do this by collecting evidence that proves your case. Here are some types of helpful evidence to collect:
- Photos of the damage to the vehicles, road and weather conditions, and any apparent injuries you suffered
- Contact information for the driver and their insurance company
- Contact information for eyewitnesses who saw your accident happen and can support your claim that the other driver was at fault for causing it
- Medical bills and records
- Paystubs and other documentation of your wage losses
Retain an Attorney
One of the most important steps you can take is to hire an experienced car accident lawyer as soon as possible after your low-speed collision. They will collect the evidence you need to win your case, negotiate your settlement, and file a lawsuit on your behalf if the insurance company refuses to be reasonable—which is common in these cases.
Were you injured in a low-speed auto crash? Fill out our convenient online form to schedule your free case evaluation to find out how our knowledgeable car accident lawyers can help you.