Most car accident lawyers agree: if you’re involved in a car crash (even if it’s just a fender bender), your best friend is your cell phone. Its ability to capture video, photographs, and voice recordings will help you gather the car accident evidence your attorney will need to cover all the insurance and legal bases.
If you don’t have a cell phone, or don’t have one “smart” enough to do it all, keep a disposable camera, a notebook, and pen in the glove compartment for just such an emergency.
As soon as possible after the incident, start gathering the evidence your car accident lawyer will need:
Car Accident Evidence to Collect
- Weather conditions
- Time of day or night
- Traffic signals and signs – Present? Working properly or damaged? Blocked by foliage?
- Your lane position and approximate speed
CAR ACCIDENT PHOTOGRAPHS
- Position of the cars involved from as many angles as you can SAFELY manage
- Damage to your car and other cars involved
- Your injuries and those of others involved, if visible
- DON’T interfere with police officers on the scene
- If you are unable to immediately take pictures because of injury, return to the scene as soon as you are able
WITNESSES TO THE ACCIDENT
Do you see any bystanders? Ask if they witnessed the accident and make sure the responding officer is aware that these people may be willing to give a statement. Again, never interfere with an officer on the scene. If possible, record their versions of the incident for future use by your attorney in court or in an insurance claim.
AFTER THE ACCIDENT, KEEP TRACK OF:
- Medical records and doctors’ notes
- Bills and estimates for medical treatment and car repair
- Accident reports – you can request a copy of a report the police officer has filed.
- Gather pay stubs and recent tax returns to establish the amount of lost wages, if necessary.
- Copies of your insurance policy to make sure you understand what is and isn’t covered.
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