Jan 11, 2024 | CHASENBOSCOLO

Immediate Actions After A No-Fault Car Accident In Virginia

Being involved in a car accident caused by another driver is a stressful and overwhelming experience. Knowing what steps to take to protect your health, safety, and legal rights is essential in the aftermath of a crash. Virginia follows a no-fault car insurance system, meaning that no matter who caused the accident, each driver’s insurance company pays for their medical expenses and lost wages. However, this does not mean the at-fault driver is off the hook for property damage or other losses. In this blog post, we’ll guide you through the immediate actions you should take after a no-fault car accident in Virginia.

Check for Injuries and Call 911

The primary and crucial action following any car accident is to check yourself and anyone else in your vehicle for injuries. Even if you feel unharmed, specific injuries like whiplash or internal bleeding may not manifest immediately. If anyone is injured, promptly dial 911 to request medical aid. If uncertain about injuries, it’s advisable to be cautious and seek medical attention.

Contact the Police

Even if everyone involved in the accident appears unharmed, it’s crucial to involve law enforcement and file an official police report. Virginia state law requires individuals involved in any collision resulting in bodily harm, fatalities, or property damage exceeding $1,500 to report the incident to the authorities. Once officers arrive, they will generate a comprehensive accident report that meticulously records all pertinent details, such as the precise date, time, location, and individuals involved in the incident. This official police report can prove invaluable when interacting with insurance providers or seeking legal recourse. Before the responding officer departs, make sure to inquire about the process for securing a personal copy of the report for your documentation.

Gather Information

While waiting for the police to arrive, gather information about the accident. This includes:

  • The other driver’s name, address, phone number, and insurance information
  • The make, model, and license plate number of the other vehicle involved
  • The contact information of any witnesses to the accident
  • The name and badge number of the responding police officer

If possible, take pictures of the accident scene, including damage to both vehicles, traffic signs, and any visible injuries. These photographs can help support your insurance claim and provide visual evidence of what happened.

Someone Hit My Car: Whose Insurance Do I Call?

In a no-fault state like Virginia, you’ll typically file a claim with your insurance company, regardless of which driver caused the accident. Your personal injury protection (PIP) coverage will cover your medical expenses and lost wages up to your policy limits. However, if the other driver was at fault and you sustained property damage, you’ll need to file a claim with their insurance company to seek compensation for repairs or the total loss of your vehicle.

When contacting the other driver’s insurer, be prepared to provide the following information:

  • The date, time, and location of the accident
  • The name and insurance information of their insured driver
  • A brief description of what happened
  • The police report number, if available

It’s important to note that the other driver’s insurer may try to deny responsibility or offer a low settlement amount. If this happens, consult an experienced car accident attorney who can help protect your rights and fight for the compensation you deserve.

Notify Your Own Insurance Company

Even if you believe the other driver was at fault, you should still notify your insurance company about the accident. Most policies require you to report any accidents promptly, which could jeopardize your coverage. When you call your insurer, provide them with the same information you gathered at the scene, including the other driver’s details, witness information, and the police report number. Your insurance company will open a claim and assign an adjuster to investigate the accident and determine the extent of your coverage.

Keep Detailed Records

In the days and weeks following the accident, keep detailed records of all expenses and losses related to the crash. This includes:

  • Medical bills and receipts
  • Repair estimates or invoices for property damage
  • Rental car expenses
  • Lost wages due to time off work for recovery or medical appointments

Maintaining accurate records will help support your insurance claim and ensure that you receive the full compensation you’re entitled to under your policy.

Be Cautious When Communicating with Insurance Companies

Immediate Actions After A No-Fault Car Accident In VirginiaYou must be cautious about what you say when dealing with insurance companies, whether your own or the other driver’s. Insurance adjusters undergo training to pose questions that might induce you to confess fault or minimize the severity of your injuries or damages. To protect yourself, follow these tips:

  • Stick to the facts and avoid speculating about what happened or who was at fault
  • Don’t apologize or admit any blame for the accident
  • Don’t give a recorded statement without consulting an attorney first
  • Don’t accept a settlement offer without fully understanding your rights and the long-term implications

If you feel pressured by an insurance company or if they deny your claim unfairly, it may be time to consult with a car accident attorney.

Consider Hiring a Virginia Car Accident Attorney

Managing the aftermath of a no-fault car accident can pose challenges, particularly if you’ve sustained injuries or substantial property damage. Engaging an experienced car accident attorney can safeguard your rights, engage in negotiations with insurance firms, and advocate for the compensation rightfully owed to you. Additionally, your attorney can guide the legal proceedings and empower you to make well-informed decisions regarding your case.

If you’ve experienced a no-fault car accident in Virginia, contact CHASENBOSCOLO today at (301) 220-0050 for a complimentary, obligation-free consultation. We will listen to your story, address your inquiries, and assist you in examining your legal avenues. Our dedicated team of attorneys is standing by, ready to provide the guidance and support you need during this challenging time. Remember, with our No Fee Guarantee®, you won’t incur any attorney’s fees unless we secure a favorable outcome for your case. Don’t hesitate to reach out – we’re here to help you face this difficult situation and fight for the justice you deserve.