The 5 Most Important Things to Do After an Auto Accident in California

1. If you are hurt, or believe you may be injured, seek medical treatment immediately.

If you don’t have insurance call Nunes Law and we can provide you with options to get medical treatment now.

2. You should report the accident to your insurance company.

Most automobile insurance companies require the policy holder or someone making a claim on the policy to report the accident to the insurance company soon after the accident. Failure to report the accident to your insurance company can cause them to deny covering the claim. We have dealt with all of the major insurance companies. See our resources section for auto insurance company phone numbers and online claim forms. Or call Nunes Law and we can help get your accident claim reported to your insurance company.

3. Report the accident to the police, California Highway Patrol or other authorities.

In some instances your insurance policy may require you to report the accident to the police, Highway Patrol or other law enforcement agency. This is particularly important if the driver of the other involved vehicle did not have automobile insurance or in cases where the other driver leaves the accident scene, such as hit and run cases. Some insurance companies require drivers insured under a policy to report these types of accidents within 24 hours of the accident.

4. You may have to report the accident to the DMV.

California Law Requires the owner or operator of any vehicle involved in an accident with $750 in vehicle damage or injury to a person a driver(s) must report the accident, to the DMV using this form: Traffic Accident Report SR 1. You can also call Nunes Law to discuss reporting the the accident to the DMV within 10 days — even if the accident was not your fault! Call Nunes Law and we can help you report the accident to the DMV.

5. Take pictures of your vehicle and the other party’s vehicle.

Since most people now carry cellular telephones with cameras, you can use that to take vehicle pictures. Try to get pictures of the sides of both vehicles. If there is little visible damage, try to photograph under the vehicle for possible frame damage. If you do not have a camera, contact Nunes Law and we can get you a camera.

Do You Need an Attorney After a Car Accident?

In most situations — particularly if someone has been injured — it is a very good idea to consult with an auto accident attorney after any motor vehicle crash. Why? Because whether and how much compensation you receive for medical bills, time off work due to injuries, and other losses will usually depend on offers of settlement by insurance companies. But the insurance adjustor's job is not to look out for your best interests. It's best to have an experienced attorney review any offers and investigate your case further before you make any decisions.

Luckily, you have everything to gain — and nothing to lose — by consulting with an attorney: most auto accident attorneys will offer a free consultation. You can learn more here about how an auto accident attorney can help you. We also welcome you to contact Nunes Law in Fresno: we're happy to review your case and discuss your legal options.

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