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Steps to take to gain compensation after a car accident

Car accidents happen every day. If you have been injured in an accident or your vehicle sustained significant damage in a collision, one of your top priorities will be to determine how to pay for the medical bills and car repair. If another individual caused the damage to you and your vehicle--due to their negligence or carelessness--you may be able to seek financial compensation for these injuries and damages.

In 2015, there were over 300,000 Illinois car crashes, and 21 percent of those resulted in injuries. In order to get the compensation that you deserve, what should you do at the scene of a car accident, as well as after you leave the scene?

At the scene

  • Call the police and make sure they create a police report
  • Take pictures of the damage to the vehicles, as well as the scene itself
  • Write down what you remember about how the accident occurred
  • Get the other driver's information, including name, phone number, address, insurance information and vehicle information

After the incident

  • Obtain a copy of the police report: Your insurance company or the other driver's insurance may request this in order to aid them in determining liability for the accident. Having it on hand may speed up the process.
  • Go to the doctor: No matter how serious the accident was, it's important to go to the doctor so they can check you for injuries. Certain injuries, such as concussions and whiplash can exhibit symptoms days or even weeks after an accident. Having a record of your injuries and the steps doctors took to help is key when seeking financial compensation in a lawsuit down the road.
  • Contact insurance: Illinois is a modified comparative fault state, which means that car accident victims can potentially collect financial compensation so long as he or she was not more at fault than the other driver. However, if it's determined that you are 51 percent responsible or more, financial recovery is barred. Contacting your insurance company--or the other driver's insurance company--can help you determine liability. 
  • Contact legal aid: Knowing how to get fair compensation for your injuries and the damage to your vehicle is difficult, especially if the insurance company is harassing you by saying you were more at-fault than is accurate. This is why having legal counsel on your side is beneficial, as you can rest assured that you are getting the compensation you deserve.

Injury and damage to your vehicle resulting from another person's negligence in a car accident can be a headache to deal with, especially if you do not know what to do first. Determining the best way to gain compensation after an accident is essential.

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