What to do After a Car Accident

Immediately after a car accident, you are likely to be upset, afraid, or even angry. Stay calm and focused. Whether you were at fault, or not, it’s important to keep your head and focus on these do’s and don’ts:


  • Asses the situation and take a moment to gather your thoughts. You were just in an accident and it is important to make sure you’re in a safe area and out of the way of oncoming traffic.

  • Call the police to make a report of the car accident. Do not let the driver of the other vehicle(s) persuade you to not involve the police.

  • Exchange insurance information and driver’s license information. You may take digital photographs of these items with your phone.

  • Make certain to get the license plate, make and model of all vehicles involved in the accident.

  • Take photographs of all cars where they impacted one another and where they were located on the road. If there are stop lights or signs, take photos of those too.

  • Take photographs of any debris on the road or any skid marks that appear to have been left by any of the involved vehicles.

  • If there was anyone who witnessed the accident, get their name, phone number, email address, and whatever else they will give you.

  • If you are able, you can call your insurance company from the scene of the accident to make the initial report.

  • If you are asked if you are injured, report that you are not sure.

  • Give the police a clear and concise description of what happened at the scene of the accident.

  • Accept medical attention offered at the scene.


  • Leave the scene of an accident. That’s a crime.

  • Don’t allow or encourage anyone else to leave the scene of the accident. If they do, get their license plate number. Take a photograph of them and / or of their car with your phone’s camera.

  • Don’t say it was your fault. It might feel like it was, but you may not be correct. The other driver may share in the responsibility for the accident.

  • Don’t say you are okay. You may feel fine at the scene only to have aches and pain develop hours or days after the accident. When you are at the scene of an accident, it is too soon to know whether or not you were injured.

  • Don’t sign the police report if it does not accurately reflect your account of the accident.

If you were injured in the accident, know your rights. You are entitled to fair compensation for your economic losses and your injuries. Be careful, the insurance company will want you to make a statement about your injuries before you have an attorney protecting your rights. It is important to engage the services of attorneys who will be on your side looking out for you from day one. Odegaard Miller Law has experienced accident attorneys ready to stand up for you.

This guide is brought to you by the experienced accident lawyers at Odegaard Miller Law, PLLC. Trusted. Aggressive and Successful Counsel.