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Law Offices of John Morelli
A Personal Injury Firm Serving All Of South Jersey

I Hit Another Driver And I Am At Fault. What Should I Do?

In any driver's history on the road, no one can conclusively say that they have never made a mistake. Mistakes happen, as we are all human beings prone to occasional lapses here and there. But, if you get into a car accident with another driver due to an admitted error that you made, what should you do?

Make Sure That You Are "Okay"

First off, just because you were in the wrong does not mean YOU aren't the one who's going to end up hurt. Make sure that you are okay because in the immediate aftermath of a car accident, the "Why?" is less important than what needs to be done next. If you are okay, though, I'd recommend to then go and see how the other driver is doing. Call for the police and medical assistance if required. Above all, never leave the scene of an accident before the police arrive.

Approaching the Other Driver

While you are not obligated to do so under New Jersey law, in the confusing moments following an accident a simple "Are you Okay?" to the other driver can go a long way in defusing any tenseness in the situation. In my 30 years as an attorney, I can't tell you how many times I've heard an injured driver get offended at the other's recalcitrant attitude. If you are able to, ask them how they're doing, it will create a modicum of goodwill that might be valuable later on.

Call For Help If Needed

Most importantly, if you do see that the other driver has been hurt and you are not, call for an ambulance to assist them at the scene. Contact your auto insurance provider as well to let them know that you have just been involved in an auto accident to start the process of filing your claim. If the other driver has been injured, you may need to speak with an attorney to assist you in handling your insurance claim. Depending on the type of insurance coverage that you purchased, the state of New Jersey allows up to $250,000 worth of medical costs (which is the amount that most drivers purchase) to be paid out through your Personal Injury Protection (PIP) policy to the other driver for their injuries.

Pictures and Video Can be Helpful

These days most people have cell phones which have cameras. If you can, take photos of the scene with the vehicles in place and of any damage. It may be very important to any case or tickets that are issued.

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