It’s important to know how to proceed in the aftermath of a serious auto accident in order to protect both yourself and your legal rights. If you have been involved in a car accident caused by a driver under the influence in New York or New Jersey, then these are some steps you should be sure to take.
Don’t Leave the Scene
Many people feel panicky after an accident, which can tempt them to try to leave as quickly as possible. However, you should never leave the scene of an accident prematurely. You should contact the police immediately, and if you or anyone else has been injured, call an ambulance. If the other driver exhibits any signs of intoxication, the police may give them a sobriety test on the scene. You should also exchange insurance information with the other driver. You may also want to turn your vehicle’s hazard lights on, especially if light conditions are poor.
Gather As Much Information As Possible
It’s also smart to begin gathering information about the accident as soon as you can. Use your phone to take pictures of the accident scene, including photos that show the relative locations of the vehicles. You should also photograph any visible vehicle damage, as well as visible injuries to yourself or others. You can also use your phone to jot down the details of the accident, including the time of day, the weather, and a description of the accident scene.
If the other driver appears intoxicated, make sure to note that and explain why they appear to be inebriated.
Talk to Witnesses
You should also be sure to get contact information—name, phone number, and email address—from anyone who witnessed the accident. Having witnesses who can provide first-hand testimony about what happened can be invaluable for establishing the facts about your case. Be sure to do this as soon as possible, before people begin leaving the scene of the accident.
Keep All Relevant Documents
If you need to seek medical treatment for your injuries, it’s critical to keep detailed records. Hold on to all medical bills, including receipts for prescription drugs and other medical items. It may also be helpful to keep a daily journal to keep track of all your medical appointments as well as the progress of your injuries. If you had to miss out on work as a result of your injuries or medical appointments, keep a record of your lost wages.
If you have been injured in a car accident involving a drunk driver, then it’s time to get in touch with Kantrowitz, Goldhamer & Graifman, P.C. Our team of NY & NJ car accident attorneys has been providing exceptional legal services in Rockland County, NY, and Bergen County, NJ, for the past 45 years. We strive to win the best possible outcomes for our clients, and our areas of practice range from car accidents to slip and fall injuries to workers compensation cases. Contact an experienced DUI accident lawyer today to schedule a consultation.