If you’ve been involved in a car accident, there are a few things you need to know about sharing information with the other driver. Knowing what to do after a car accident and what information to share saves you time and frustration.
You must always exchange contact and insurance information with the other driver. Maryland law requires drivers involved in crashes to exchange insurance information.
This ensures that everyone has a way to get in touch with each other if any additional issues arise from the accident. This could include things like filing an insurance claim or contacting a lawyer.
Additionally, exchanging contact information allows everyone involved in the accident to keep track of any medical appointments or treatments that may be necessary as a result of injuries sustained in the crash. By having this information on hand, it will be much easier to get the care you need and avoid any delays.
Information to exchange includes:
- Full names of people involved
- Contact information (phone number, email address, etc.)
- Insurance company name and policy number
If there are any witnesses to the accident, get their contact information as well.
Can You Refuse to Exchange Information?
What happens if someone involved in the accident refuses to share information? What if you don’t want to share information?
According to Maryland law, drivers must provide their insurance information to the other driver. This information includes the name and address of the insurance carrier, as well as the policy number.
If you are injured in a motor vehicle collision and the other driver refuses to provide you with their insurance information, you should call the police immediately. This is against the law and usually raises questions regarding a driver’s insurance coverage.
It’s a good idea to call the police regardless of how willing everyone is to share information, but if anyone refuses to share information about their insurance policy, you should involve the police.
What Else Should You Do at the Scene of an Accident?
Take Photos of the Accident Scene
Following an accident, if your health allows, pull out your phone and snap a few photos of the area. This helps document what happened.
Pictures can help document the extent of the damage to your vehicle and any other property that was involved in the accident. This can be important evidence if you need to file an insurance claim or take legal action against the responsible party.
Pictures also help show how the accident happened. This can be helpful if there is any dispute about who was at fault for the accident.
Finally, pictures can help you remember important details about the accident that you may not remember later. This can be important if you need to give a statement to the police or your insurance company.
Don’t Admit Fault
No matter what, don’t admit fault for the accident to the other driver or any witnesses. This is true even if you know you caused the accident.
It’s easy to understand the instinct to apologize after an accident. You might think you were at fault, or you might be feeling guilty and shaken up. Remember, though, apologizing might legally call into question how much fault you bear for the crash.
Insurance companies are in the business of making money, not paying out claims. They will often look for any opportunity to deny or reduce a claim. If you apologize at the scene of the accident, they may use your apology as an admission of fault. Even if you didn’t cause the accident, the at-fault party can use your apology against you to argue that you were partially at fault.
It’s best to avoid admitting fault, either explicitly or implicitly, at the accident scene. If you’re not sure what happened, it’s okay to say so. You can also avoid admitting fault by simply declining to comment on the accident until you’ve had a chance to speak with an attorney.
Are you wondering what to do after a car accident? Do you want to be prepared in case you’re involved in a collision? We can help.