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What to do After a Car Accident in New Jersey ?

Being involved in a car accident can be a traumatic and stressful experience. Even minor accidents can leave you shaken and unsure of what steps to take.

However, it’s crucial to remain calm and follow the proper procedures to protect your rights and ensure a smooth claim process. 

From seeking medical attention to contacting a car accident lawyer, the actions you take after an accident can significantly impact your physical and financial well-being.

In New Jersey, there were over 524 fatal crashes in 2023, and a 5% increase in traffic accidents in the first quarter of 2024 compared to the same period in 2023. 

Immediately following a car accident, notify the Department of Motor Vehicles and comply with the state’s regulations for filing a claim to safeguard your interests and meet legal requirements.

In this article, we’ll guide you through the 11 most essential steps to take after a car accident in New Jersey.

What to do After a Car Accident in New Jersey ?

11 Most Essential Steps to Take After a Car Accident in New Jersey

1. Check For Injuries And Ensure Safety

Your top priority should be ensuring the safety of all parties involved. Check for any injuries and call emergency services immediately if anyone requires medical attention.

Even if the injuries seem minor, it’s best to err on the side of caution and seek a professional medical evaluation. Remember to prioritize your safety as well, and move to a safe location if necessary.

2. Get To A Safe Location

If possible, move your vehicle to a safe location, such as the shoulder of the road or a nearby parking lot. This will prevent further accidents and ensure the safety of all parties involved, as well as other motorists.

Be cautious when exiting your vehicle and watch for oncoming traffic. Move to a well-lit area and avoid standing in a location that could put you at risk of further injury.

3. Pull Over and Call 911

Even if the accident appears minor, it’s crucial to call 911 and report the incident to the authorities. This will ensure that a police officer is dispatched to the scene to document the accident and create an official report, which can be invaluable for insurance claims and legal proceedings.

Provide the dispatcher with your location and a brief description of the accident, including the number of vehicles involved and any injuries sustained.

4. Exchange Information with Other Parties

Once the vehicles are safely off the road, exchange contact information, insurance details, and driver’s license numbers with the other parties involved in the accident. This information will be necessary for filing insurance claims and pursuing legal action if required.

Be sure to also exchange vehicle information, including the make, model, and license plate number. Additionally, take note of the other parties’ phone numbers and email addresses to facilitate communication and ensure a smooth claims process.

5. Document the Accident Scene

Use your smartphone or camera to take photographs or videos of the accident scene, capturing the positions of the vehicles, any visible damage, and the surrounding area.

This documentation can be invaluable when filing insurance claims or pursuing legal action, as it provides a visual record of the accident. Be sure to capture images of any visible injuries as well.

6. Collect Witness Details

If there were any witnesses present at the scene, collect their contact information. Their accounts can provide valuable insights into the events leading up to the accident and can be used to support your case if needed.

Be sure to ask witnesses to describe what they saw and heard, and to provide a written statement if possible.

7. Seek Medical Attention

Even if you don’t feel injured immediately after the accident, it’s advisable to seek medical attention as soon as possible.

Some injuries, such as whiplash or internal injuries, may not be immediately apparent, and prompt medical evaluation can help document any potential injuries and ensure proper treatment. Don’t hesitate to seek medical attention if you experience any symptoms or discomfort.

8. Limit Your Comments

Avoid making any statements that could be construed as admitting fault or liability. Stick to the facts and refrain from speculating or engaging in heated discussions with the other parties involved.

Your comments could potentially be used against you in legal proceedings or insurance claims, so it’s best to remain silent and let the authorities handle the situation.

9. Talk to the Police

When the police officer arrives at the scene, provide a clear and concise account of the events leading up to the accident. Be honest and cooperative, but avoid admitting fault or speculating about the cause of the accident.

The police report can be a crucial piece of evidence in establishing liability and supporting your insurance claim, so be sure to provide accurate and detailed information.

See also: How To File A Police Report For A Car Accident In NJ

10. Report the Accident to Your Insurance

Notify your insurance company about the accident as soon as possible, even if you believe you were not at fault. Most insurance policies require prompt reporting of incidents, and failing to do so could potentially jeopardize your claim or result in higher rates or penalties.

Be sure to provide your insurance company with all relevant documentation, including the police report and any witness statements.

11. Contact an Experienced New Jersey Car Accidents Lawyer

If you’ve suffered injuries or significant property damage, it’s advisable to consult with an experienced New Jersey car accident lawyer. They can help you navigate the legal process, protect your rights, and ensure you receive fair compensation for your losses.

Don’t hesitate to seek legal advice if you’re unsure of how to proceed or if you’re facing resistance from the other party’s insurance company.

Protecting Your Rights and Interests as a Passenger in a Car Accident Case

As a passenger involved in a car accident in New Jersey, it’s crucial to take specific steps to protect your rights and interests.

Following these essential steps after a car accident in New Jersey can help protect your rights and interests, and increase your chances of a successful insurance claim or legal action.

If you’ve sustained injuries in a car accident, consider consulting with a Rosengard Law Group which can help you get through the complicated legal process and fight for the compensation you deserve.

With their expertise and guidance, you can focus on recovering from your injuries while they handle the legal details, ensuring that your rights are protected and your interests are represented.

You can call 856-284-6446 to schedule an appointment or complete our online contact form for a free consultation with our dedicated team of Rosengard Law Group.

Protecting Your Rights and Interests as a Passenger in a Car Accident Case

Seeking Justice After a Car Accident in Jersey City

If you’ve been injured in a car accident, it’s essential to seek legal advice from a qualified Jersey City car accident lawyer to protect your rights and interests.

A skilled attorney can help you navigate the complex legal process, gather evidence, and build a strong case to ensure you receive fair compensation for your injuries.

Don’t hesitate to reach out to a reputable law firm to schedule a consultation with an experienced accident lawyer in Jersey City who can guide you through this challenging time and fight for the justice you deserve.

Remember, remaining calm, documenting the scene, and seeking medical attention are crucial, even in seemingly minor accidents.

By following these guidelines, you’ll have a clear record of the events, which can be invaluable in supporting your case and ensuring a fair outcome.

FAQs

How long do you have to file a claim after an accident in NJ?

In New Jersey, the statute of limitations for filing a personal injury claim after a car accident is generally two years from the date of the accident. However, it’s advisable to file your claim as soon as possible to ensure the preservation of evidence and witness accounts.

Do you need a police report to file an insurance claim in NJ?

While a police report is not strictly required to file an insurance claim in New Jersey, having one can significantly strengthen your case. The report provides an official account of the accident details, which can help support your claim and expedite the claims process.

Conclusion

Being involved in a car accident in New Jersey can be a stressful and overwhelming experience, but following the proper steps can help you deal with the situation with confidence and protect your rights.

Whether you’re driving on the Garden State Parkway, Route 1, or local roads in cities like Newark, Jersey City, or Atlantic City, remember that remaining calm and taking the right steps is crucial.

Documenting the scene, seeking medical attention, and consulting with an experienced legal professional are crucial actions that can make a significant difference in the outcome of your case.

By following these essential steps after a car accident in New Jersey, you’ll be better prepared to handle the legal and insurance processes and increase your chances of a fair and favourable resolution.

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