A car accident takes just seconds to happen but working through the steps needed afterwards can take months. If you just caused an accident to happen and are not sure what to do or expect, here are some important things you should know.
Call for help
If you are able to make a phone call after an accident, you should immediately call for help. You can dial 911 or the local police if you have the number, and you should do this right away. Chances are, though, if you do not call, someone else will, because there are usually witnesses around when accidents happen.
Do not take the blame
When the police arrive or when you get out of your car to talk to the other party, do not admit you did something wrong. For example, the wrong thing to say would be, "I just did not even see you pulling out." The evidence from the accident will likely speak for itself, and you should not take the blame even if you know it is your fault.
Contact your insurance company
If you need medical help, you should get it, but if you do not, you should go home and contact your insurance company. Your insurance company will ask you a lot of questions and will initiate a case for this accident. If you are found at-fault, they will pay for the damages to the other party. If you have collision coverage and are at-fault, they will also pay for the repairs you need to your car. If you are not at fault, it will not be your insurance company's responsibility to pay for your repairs or the other party's repairs.
Pay your deductible and get your car fixed
One of the last steps will be to choose a car repair shop to use for the repairs your car needs. In order to get the repairs completed, you will either have to pay for them out of your pocket (if you do not have collision coverage), or you will have to first pay your deductible. The insurance company would then pick up the tab for the remaining balance owed.
Accidents happen all the time, and after you cause an accident, there is not much you can do about it except to deal with it. If you have questions about a recent accident or about auto insurance coverage, contact a local auto insurance agency to learn more.