1. Call the Police and Take Photos. Photograph the vehicles or have someone do it if you cannot. Remember what the other driver says. Watch what you say. Do not admit fault! You may have to report the accident to the Oregon DMV within 72 hours. Read When Must You Report a Motor Vehicle Accident to the Oregon DMV.
2. Getting Your Medical Bills Paid. If an ambulance comes to the scene and the EMT wants you to go to the hospital, go in the ambulance as your auto insurance will probably pay for it. See Getting Your Bills Paid when Injured in a MVA. Follow Your Doctor’s Orders regarding treatment. Attend all scheduled visits and promptly schedule future visits.
3. Getting Reimbursed for Lost Income. Your auto insurance will also reimbursee you for your lost income if your injuries prevent you from working for at least two weeks. For more information read, Getting Your Bills Paid when Injured in a MVA.
4. Getting Paid for Your Pain and Suffering. To get paid for your pain-and-suffering, set up a liability claim against the at fault driver's insurance company. Be careful what you say to the at fault driver's insurance company. Everything you say to them will probably be recorded. You do not have to give them a statement about the specifics of the accident or your injuries. Do not sign anything from them without first talking to an attorney. I do not charge for such calls. If you sign a document called a release or settlement agreement you may give up your rights.
5. Call an Attorney. It’s your decision whether to hire an attorney but if you don’t you may miss out on benefits you never knew existed. I do not charge for such calls.
Read more about GRJ expertise and car accidents.
Gary R. Johnson is a Central Oregon attorney who has handled personal injury cases since 1994.