What should you do after a motor vehicle accident?

Motor vehicle accidents can strike at the most unexpected moments, turning an otherwise ordinary day into a tumultuous whirlwind of shock, confusion, and stress. They’re occurrences that few anticipate, and even fewer are prepared to handle effectively. Yet, the actions taken in the immediate aftermath of an accident are often pivotal, with lasting implications for health, finances, and potential legal proceedings.

The confusing matrix of thoughts and questions that typically follow a crash – What should I do now? Who should I call? Should I move my car? – can make it difficult to think clearly and act rationally. This is why having a fundamental understanding of the steps to follow can be a game-changer in mitigating stress and protecting your interests.

Professionals in the field, such as motor vehicle accident attorney, can provide indispensable advice and support in these trying times. Their expert guidance can illuminate the best course of action, helping to preserve your well-being, rights, and potential claims.

Step 1: Prioritize Safety and Seek Medical Attention

The first priority is to ensure everyone’s safety. If the accident is minor and the vehicle is blocking traffic, move to a safer location. However, if the vehicles are not causing a hazard or if moving them would result in further injury, it’s best to leave them where they are.

Regardless of the perceived severity of injuries, seek medical attention. Not all injuries are immediately apparent; some, like concussions or internal injuries, might only surface hours or even days later.

Step 2: Notify Authorities and Document the Accident

Notify the police, even if the accident seems minor. Their official report will be a crucial piece of evidence should legal or insurance disputes arise. Take photos of the accident scene, including vehicle damage, skid marks, road conditions, and any injuries.

Step 3: Exchange Information and Report the Accident

Exchange personal and insurance information with the other party. This includes names, contact information, driver’s license numbers, and insurance policy details. As soon as possible, report the accident to your insurance company.

Step 4: Consult a Motor Vehicle Accident Attorney

Involving an attorney after a motor vehicle accident can be invaluable. They can guide you through the process, advocating on your behalf with insurance companies and, if necessary, in court. They can help ensure that you are fairly compensated for your damages and losses.

Step 5: Keep Detailed Records

Maintain a record of everything related to the accident. This includes medical bills, repair estimates, time off work, and any other expenses incurred. Documentation can be crucial if you need to file a claim or lawsuit.


Experiencing a motor vehicle accident can be an overwhelming ordeal, with numerous legal and medical considerations to juggle. But remember, you’re not alone on this journey. Understanding the steps to take post-accident and having the right support can turn a chaotic situation into a manageable process, promoting a smoother recovery.

So, if you ever find yourself in the unfortunate event of a motor vehicle accident, take a deep breath, prioritize safety, and remember this guide. It won’t make the situation pleasant, but it will undoubtedly make it less stressful, enabling you to focus on what truly matters – your recovery.