Using Technology To Capture Evidence Following A Car Accident
The time just following a car accident can be both hectic and terrifying -- but it's also the time when you need to be the most vigilant. There are many legal repercussions to an accident, even if you weren't to blame for it. You'll need to use all of your tools to protect yourself, and one of your most important tools will be your technology. Here are a few ways that you can use a simple smartphone or another device to protect yourself.
Take Video and Photographic Evidence Following the Crash
After emergency services have been rendered -- but before vehicles have been removed -- you should always take a video and photos of the vehicles that were involved. This will show how the vehicles collided and what the extent of the damage was. There are times when you may believe that you were at fault (even if you may not have been). Even if you believe you were at fault, you should still collect this evidence: otherwise it could be argued that the damage was worse than it was.
Record Your Phone Calls to Insurance Companies
Most smartphones today give you the option of recording your calls. You should only call your insurance company once you have spoken with an attorney -- but even so, you should record your calls to make sure you have a copy. This is legal because your insurance company records your calls (and notifies you of it) to begin with. There is never any reason you should talk to another individual's insurance company; simply forward your company's information to them.
(With Knowledge) Record Any Conversations
You should not speak with anyone else at the scene of the accident; you should only speak with your attorney. If someone else speaks to you, you can let them know that you are recording and record their conversations. Note that in some states you must tell them that you are recording, but in other states there is something called a "one-party consent law" where you can record regardless.
Dictate or Note Anything You Remember
Immediately following the accident is when you should take down any information that you remember. People tend to have faulty memories: people can rewrite their memories accidentally or simply forget important details. Once the accident has occurred and you are in a safe, private place, you should either dictate or type out everything that happened regarding the accident. This can then be given to your attorney.
You should never assume that an accident is "too small" or that the cause of it was "too obvious" to get a car accident attorney involved. There are many issues that may arise later on, such as injuries that were worse than they seemed at first. Your attorney will be able to help you determine what the appropriate response to your accident is and what you should do to protect yourself both financially and medically.