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Steps to take after being involved in a car accident

When a Pennsylvania resident is involved in a motor vehicle accident, their first priority should be to seek medical assistance for any injuries. They should also contact the police if criminal activity, such as drunk driving, may have been a contributory factor to the incident. Once these pressing concerns have been taken care of, a motorist might need to inform their insurance provider about the crash.

When no road users have been injured and property damage is minor, motorists may not wish to involve their insurers. Even minor claims could cause auto insurance premiums to soar, and paying out of pocket to repair scratches or small dents may make more financial sense than dealing with deductibles and rate hikes. When an insurance claim is warranted, the motorist should report the car accident as quickly as possible. Most insurers provide 24-hour emergency telephone numbers for this purpose.

Those who suffer injuries or property damage caused by the negligent actions of others may pursue civil remedies. It's important to understand that each state has laws called statutes of limitations that specify how long injured parties have to file lawsuits. In Pennsylvania, accident victims are given two years to initiate litigation.

Personal injury attorneys would likely advise accident victims who plan to pursue their legal options to act quickly. Eyewitness accounts are often crucial in these cases, and witnesses may be difficult to track down several months after a crash. Attorneys could also advise plaintiffs to begin preparing their cases immediately by gathering information and photographs. Accident victims should also keep accurate records of any crash-related expenses they incur such as medical costs, property repairs and lost income.

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