If you or your loved one is in a car accident, remember to follow these steps:
- Get, and keep, contact information from parties involved. Write down the names, addresses, phone numbers and insurance information of anyone involved in the accident including witnesses. Make sure the police have this information.
- Contact your family doctor. Seek medical treatment immediately. Even if you leave the scene by ambulance, it is vital that you let your family doctor know within 24 hours so they can properly help you.
- Seek legal advice. Contact a personal injury law firm and find out all your options. Always get legal advice prior to making any written or sworn statement to an insurance company.
- Call your insurance company and tell them you were in an accident. Do not speak to any insurance company other than your own. If you do not have insurance, report the accident to the insurance company of the car that hit you.
- Make a claim. Within 30 days of receiving an application for benefits from your insurance company, you must initiate a claim for benefits, either personally or through a law firm.
- Find out about other coverage you may have. If you have medical or disability insurance through your employer, make sure you comply with the time lines for making a claim with that insurance company.
- Keep detailed records. No one has a perfect memory – least of all after a collision. Record the names of the medical/health professionals who treat you, keep all receipts of any expenses related to your accident and make notes of all your health problems following the accident.
Print out this handy brochure so you don't have to remember all of this, and keep it in your glove box.