Two Big Tips For Handling Small Car Accidents

Summer is a great time to get out and enjoy everything the world has to offer. Unfortunately, the increased traffic on the road plays a big part in the big spike in car accidents that are seen every summer. That's why it's important to be prepared for them.

Because you probably don't exactly experience these events very often, it's easy to get thrown off track when they do happen. One of the most common types of car accidents is the minor "fender-bender," which can include everything from a hard bump in the parking lot of a shopping mall to an actual crumpled fender. Here are some tips:

1. Don't agree to handle the accident for cash.

Whether you hit another vehicle or a pedestrian or another vehicle hit you, don't agree to handle the issue on the spot for cash. It might seem tempting, especially if all the damages seem minor. It sure sounds like it beats dealing with the insurance company, right?

Wrong. If you hit someone, especially a pedestrian in a parking lot, an offer to settle the issue for cash should immediately alert you to an issue. That's often the hallmark of a scam artist who purposefully walks out in front of vehicles trying to back out of a parking space and drops to the ground.

If someone hit you, you run the risk that the damages to your car or person are actually greater than you realize. Once your adrenaline wears off and you get a better look at your car, you may regret a rash decision.

Either way, call the authorities. If they can't come out for a minor accident in your area, insist on exchanging insurance and contact information.

2. Don't brush off your injuries.

That pain in your shoulder from the seatbelt could be much more serious than "just a bruise." You could have damage to the brachial nerve bundle in your arm that will slowly interfere with your ability to use it. You could have a broken collarbone, a dislocated shoulder, or misaligned vertebrae. 

The point is, you don't really know how badly you are hurt until you get checked out by a doctor. A lot of people dismiss seemingly "minor" injuries after car accidents, especially on vacation, because they don't want to go through the hassle of a hospital trip and figure they're just bruised. When their injuries turn out to be serious, it's much harder to prove they occurred in the accident without clear evidence. Go get checked out at a hospital or doctor's office if you're hurt in any way.

If a car accident left you with injuries and a lot of debts to handle, auto accident attorneys can evaluate your case and determine if you should file a claim. Consider talking to one today.