Getting hit by another car can be a huge headache at best and life-changing at worst. Dealing with insurance, car damages, and personal injury are just some of the repercussions of someone hitting your car.
In this article, we’ll go through what to do when someone hits your car. Whether your car gets hit while it’s parked or while you’re driving, you’ll be prepared to handle what can be a difficult situation. In the worst case, you’ll also gain a better understanding of what to do if you succumb to any injuries.
What to do if someone hits your parked car
If someone hits your car while parked, take action immediately with these few steps:
1. Exchange information with the other driver (if applicable)
If the other driver is still at the scene when they hit your parked car, exchange information with the driver. Necessary information includes driver name, contact information, and insurance details.
More often than not, the other driver won’t be at the scene when you’ve found out your car has been hit. Look for a note left typically on your dashboard with the driver’s contact information. If no note was left, it could be a case of hit-and-run, which we’ll discuss in step 4.
2. Look for witnesses
Ask around to see if there were any witnesses to the accident. Speak with bystanders around the vicinity to see if they saw anything. Nearby store owners could have also potentially noticed the crash.
Parking lots may have CCTV or security cameras installed. Securing footage of the incident would be extremely valuable, especially if it was a hit-and-run.
3. Inspect and document damage
Make note of the damage done to your vehicle. Take plenty of photos of any damage you see. The more pictures you have, the better off you’ll be in picking up details you may have missed at the scene of an accident.
4. Call the police
If someone hits your vehicle, notify the police even if you think it was a minor accident. They’ll write up a police report, which can then be used for your insurance claim. Police also act as an objective arbitrator if disagreements arise between you and the other driver.
Calling the police is especially vital if someone hit your car and then proceeds to flee the scene without leaving a note. Hit-and-run is a serious offense, which can lead to criminal charges.
5. Call insurance company
Ideally, you’ll hire a good personal injury attorney and they will contact the insurance company for you. However, if you are contacting your insurance company, let your insurance company know that someone hit your car right away. This will get you started on what can be a lengthy claim process.
If you were involved with a hit-and-run scenario, depending on your insurance plan, you may be covered for the damages. Many insurance plans have an underinsured motorist clause (UM/UIM), which covers bodily injury caused by the other driver fleeing the scene.
What to do if someone hits your car while driving
Deciding what to do when someone hits your car, especially while driving, can be overwhelming. Getting hit while driving can be a more complicated situation than getting hit while parked.
Take the following actions if someone hits you while driving.
1. Move to safety
Before doing anything else, ensure you and passengers within the vehicle are safe. If you’re right in the middle of the road, pull over to avoid further injury or damage. Turn on your hazard lights and set up safety cones (if you have them) to warn other drivers.
2. Call 911
Once you’re in a safe location, call 911. This is especially true if someone in the vehicle is seriously injured. Those experiencing neck, head, or back pains will need immediate medical attention.
Even in minor accidents, you should still call 911. Calling the emergency line will notify the police to investigate the scene. As mentioned earlier, the police officer will complete a police report detailing the scene of the accident.
3. Exchange information
While waiting for the police to arrive, exchange information with the driver that hit you. At a minimum, you should obtain the other driver’s:
- Full name
- Phone number and email
- Insurance company name and policy number .
4. Take photos
Just as you would for a parked car accident, take extensive photos of the accident scene. Make sure you include photos of the surrounding scene, not just your car damage. Photos of street intersections, road conditions, and other pertinent details could be useful for your case.
5. Call insurance company
Again, your attorney will handle this step for you. However, no matter who’s at fault, notify your insurance company when you get hit by another car. The insurance agent will provide you with the next steps for filing a claim.
What to do if you’re injured
Dealing with car damages is a headache in and of itself. Sustaining injuries when someone hits your car can complicate the entire situation to a whole new level.
If the other car hit you and you’re injured, consider consulting a car accident attorney. Experienced personal injury lawyers assist victims in navigating the complicated legal process and help mitigate any legal red tape that comes up.
A personal injury lawyer will also deal with insurance companies that are notorious for forcing victims to settle quickly, potentially losing out on large amounts of monetary compensation.
Contact Valiente Mott
Following the few steps outlined above will give you a good idea of what to do when someone hits your car. If you need further legal assistance after a car hits your vehicle, contact us today!
Valiente Mott is a law firm dedicated to helping personal injury victims. We handle all personal injury matters, including, but not limited to, car crashes, defective products, and catastrophic injury. We are compassionate, yet aggressive when protecting personal injury victims and families who lost loved ones in fatal accidents. Learn more about who we are.
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