What Should I Do After a Car Accident? | claims.co.uk ™
Or call free on:
0800 234 6438
We take your data seriously. See our privacy policy & terms.
By submitting this form you agree to be contacted by our partners.

What should I do immediately following a car accident?

It’s likely that you’ll be in a state of shock straight after a car accident and fussing around gathering details will probably be the last thing on your mind.

But, if you’re able to do so, noting down some of the key bits of information mentioned below can be very useful if you decide to make a personal injury claim later down the line.

When you speak to a specialist personal injury solicitor, they’ll need to bring together all the facts of your accident so that they can prove it was somebody else’s fault and get you the full amount of compensation you need for you injury and recovery. Any evidence you manage to get at the scene can help them to do this.

For free advice or to find out whether you could make a case, you can speak to a trained legal adviser for free on 0800 234 6438. They’ll never pressure you into taking the next steps, but can answer your questions and help you decide how you’d like to move forward.

What details should you gather?

We know that being involved in a road accident can be very traumatic, and this can often make it difficult to remember exactly what happened and who was involved after time has passed.

Because of this, it’s best to make some notes while you’re at the scene of the accident so that your solicitor can get a clearer picture of what happened when putting together your case.

If it’s possible for your to do so, we recommend gathering the information below:

  • Names, contact information and insurance details of the other people involved in the accident. You should also take down car number plates as this will make it possible for you to trace the driver if needed (for example, if they give you fake information).
  • Make a note of the names and numbers of anyone who witnessed the accident. Your solicitor might get in touch with them later to get an unbiased view of what happened.
  • Write down a detailed account of what happened. This could include photos of the scene of the crash, or even a simple sketch to help you remember the position of the cars and their direction of travel.

Always pull over after a road accident

It’s very important for you to pull over if you’ve been involved in a road traffic accident, even if it wasn’t your fault. It’s a legal requirement for you to stop if any of the following have happened:

  • People have been injured
  • An animal has been hit
  • Someone else’s property has been damaged

Most people feel the need to apologise after being in a road accident, especially if they think it was their own fault – but the court may see it differently. Because of this, it’s best not to apologise straight away, as this could be taken as an admission of guilt and could affect your compensation claim.

Seek medical help

Unless you’re completely sure you were unharmed in the accident, it’s important to see a doctor or go to A&E as soon as possible. It’s better to be safe than sorry, as you may have been injured without realising it straight away.

Conditions such as whiplash can take hours or even days to become apparent, and injuries such as fractures and internal bleeding may need an in-depth examination to be spotted.

In the time following your accident, you should also keep receipts for any expenses caused by your injuries, as well as noting any earnings lost through time spent off work. Your compensation will be worked out with these in mind so that you’re not left out-of-pocket.

Make a compensation claim

If you’ve been injured in a road accident which wasn’t your fault, then a solicitor may be able to help you make a compensation claim to cover the costs of your injuries, as well as the effects they’ve had on your life.

Although it might seem like a lot of stress, a specialist solicitor can do most of the work on your behalf. This means you can get the money you need to move on, without the pressure of being swamped with legal paperwork and complicated terms.

When working out your compensation, your solicitor will take all the effects of your road accident into consideration. As well as your lost earnings, this will also include any transport costs you’ve had to pay for while your car’s being repaired or replaced.

It will also help to cover any social events or hobbies you’ve missed out on, as well as the effect on your mental wellbeing.

To find out whether you could claim, you can reach a legal adviser for a free no-obligation consultation on 0800 234 6438.

Other Important Information

*No Win No Fee

  • Although all our cases are handled on a no win no fee basis, other costs could be payable upon solicitors request. These will be fully explained to you before you proceed. Most customers will pay 25% (including VAT) of the compensation they are awarded to their law firm, although this may vary based on individual circumstances. Your solicitor may arrange for insurance to be in place for you to make sure your claim is risk free. Termination fees based on time spent may apply, or in situations such as: lack of cooperation or deliberately misleading our solicitors, or failing to go to any medical or expert examination, or court hearing.
  • *Criminal Injury Claims

  • If you want to make a claim for a criminal injury, you are not required to use the services of a claims management company to pursue the claim. You can submit your claim for free on your own behalf, directly to the Criminal Injury Compensation Authority (England, Wales, and Scotland) or the Criminal Injury Compensation Scheme (Northern Ireland).
About the Author

Nicola Laver LLB

Nicola is a dual qualified journalist and non-practising solicitor. She is a legal journalist, editor and author with more than 20 years' experience writing about the law.

When you submit your details, you'll be in safe hands. Our partners are National Accident Helpline (a brand of National Accident Law, a firm of personal injury solicitors regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority). They are the UK's leading personal injury service. Their friendly legal services advisers will call you to talk about your claim and give you free, no-obligation advice. National Accident Law may pay us a marketing fee for our services.

By submitting your personal data, you agree for your details to be sent to National Accident Law so they can contact you to discuss your claim.

If you win your case, your solicitor's success fee will be taken from the compensation you are awarded - up to a maximum of 25%. Your solicitor will discuss any fees before starting your case.