What to Do if You Are Involved in a Car Accident Out of State
Car accidents can happen anywhere and at any time and they seem to happen when you are least prepared. Although resolving a car accident that happens in your home state is a relatively straightforward process, being involved in an accident out of state can be a complicated matter. So, what do you do in such a scenario?
Different Accident Scenarios
Car accidents are common and an unfortunate part of owning a car, especially for those who love driving in unfamiliar locations. It is estimated that around 3 million people are injured in car accidents every year.
In most cases, legal action is taken in the state that the accident occurred. Out-of-state accidents that are easy to resolve are those that involve someone who lives in the state where it occurred, regardless of where you live. However, if you get into an accident with someone who is also traveling out of state, things can get complicated. Legal action might be taken in the state where the accident occurred and, if classified as a multi-state accident, then legal action can be taken where either of the parties live and where the accident occurred.
What to Do After the Accident
The one thing to always remember is to never admit fault for the accident. Doing so makes you liable and can put you in legal jeopardy. Instead, call the police and also call for medical help. Always ensure that everyone is safe before you go any further. Next, give the police your statement and file a police report. You will need both of these if you would like to make a personal injury claim.
Next, call your insurance provider and let them know about the accident. They may require that you get relevant insurance information from the other party, so collect that information before or during the call. Do not forget to take photographs and collect witness statements. Your next call should be to a personal injury attorney.
Filing a Claim
The next step after the accident is to file a claim. You should get in touch with a local attorney for the jurisdiction where the accident occurred. For example, if you are involved in an accident in Georgia, you can call a firm like Horst Shewmaker, a personal injury law firm based in Georgia that will help you get the process of making a personal injury claim started. Getting a local attorney onboard gives you the best chance to win your case, as they understand the local laws better than someone from out of state.
Remember that some claims can be moved to federal courts if federal laws were broken or if costs are above a certain threshold. Try to avoid this option because cases and claims that go to federal law can be complicated, costly, and take a long time to be resolved.
Accidents are prevalent, and this is why it is important to know what to do when you are involved in one, especially out of state. The most important thing to remember is that you will need the help of the police and a personal injury attorney if you would like to file a personal injury claim.