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A car accident may involve dealing with injuries, insurance companies, lawyers and witnesses. Our personal injury attorneys at Olmsted & Olmsted, LLC recommend doing the following after a car accident:
- Turn on your flasher lights. If necessary and if you have them, you can set out flares or reflectors.
- Is everyone okay? Find out if anyone involved in the accident is injured and if so call 911.
- Notify state or local police. This is important to establish an accident report.
- Never apologize for the accident. Any apology can be taken as an admission of fault or liability.
- Interview witnesses. If possible, try to identify any witnesses and get their contact information.
- Take pictures. Use your cell phone or actual camera to take pictures of the damage done to your car and the location of the accident.
- Contact your insurance company. Notify your insurance company of the loss or damage and keep track of the time and money spent while pursuing your claim.
- Do not talk to the other party's insurance company. If you are contacted, tell them to call your attorney or insurance company.
- Get a property damage figure from your insurance company. This amount will serve as the amount you can recover to repair or replace your car. If you are not happy with the figure from your insurance company, seek outside quotes.
- Never accept the first offer or estimate. This could be a costly mistake.
- Find a lawyer as soon as possible. You will want to give your lawyer the following information:
- Date, location and approximate time of the accident
- Copy of the accident report, if available
- Names, addresses and phone numbers of any witnesses or parties to the accident, including any injured persons
- Photos of the accident and your damaged vehicle
- Copies of diagnoses and medical bills incurred
A will protects your property and can be especially helpful if you want to distribute your property to people other than your relatives. Without a will, Maryland state law dictates the distribution of your property. The default plan normally distributes property to relatives. We can help you draft a will.
While it may seem straightforward for you to draft your will yourself, personally-drafted wills tend to be incomplete and are, therefore, invalid under state law. An attorney familiar with Maryland's laws can draft a legally valid will.
If you have been arrested, answer all questions about your identification like your name, address, and birth date truthfully. While you have the right to refrain from answering self-incriminating questions, lying is never a good idea. Giving officers a hard time during the arrest process is also not beneficial and will make things tougher on you. Please feel free to contact us immediately.
The importance of competent legal representation is so great that the Constitution guarantees every criminal defendant the right to an attorney. A criminal attorney knows the laws and court customs relevant to your case, and can apply this knowledge to protect and maximize your legal interests. No matter what your legal situation, a criminal lawyer will help you more than you could help yourself by going it alone. Most judges will not even consider a plea bargain from a defendant without legal representation.