After A Multi-Car Accident Don’t Do This
You were traveling on a busy highway when all of a sudden the car in front of you brakes. Instinctively, you react and apply the brakes in your vehicle. Unfortunately, the cars behind you either weren’t paying attention or didn’t have your cat-like reflexes and one after the other smashed into each other.
Your vehicle had been rear-ended then pushed into the car in front of it, and that car pushed into the car in front of that one. And behind you there were seven cars all damaged from the pile up.
We always encourage those who get into fender-benders or even major highway accidents to take pictures, to write down copious notes and make sure injuries are addressed right away.
Now here’s where it gets interesting, let me explain.
When you or someone in your party “live-streams” the aftermath of the accident to social media platforms such as Facebook, YouTube or even Instagram you need to realize that video may be requested and could possibly be used against you. Sure, your inclination is to tell your story or share with friends that you’re still alive, but that information that you’ve now posted for all to see can also be seen by insurance adjusters, lawyers and be evidence in a jury trial.
With these types of vehicular accidents, it’s not always clear who is at fault, even with a police report. Was it the first driver who stopped suddenly? Was it the last driver who wasn’t paying attention and caused a chain reaction? Was it one of the middle vehicles who smashed into the cars in front, not giving the drivers behind enough reaction time to course correct?
Typically how insurance companies deal with multi-vehicle accidents where one driver rear-ends another, no matter how many cars are involved, the car in the back is generally found at fault for the accident. Doesn’t seem fair does it? Not when it was the person in the very front who decided to slam on the brakes causing all the vehicles to cascade into each other. And it may be determined that some of those cars are partially at fault, depending on the facts.
But now there is a video from you clearly showing the accident, all the people and cars involved and you are narrating so everyone can clearly see you and/or your party are free of injuries. Now if you tell the insurance that you have injuries beyond what you might have shared on live video, your video will be used as a confession of sorts and your claim denied.
We have been programmed to share our lives to social media, unfortunately it can be the very thing that prevents you from winning a case.
So if you happen to be involved in an auto accident and you feel the urge to live stream the after effects of the crash, do yourself a favor and leave the dialogue out. That’s right, don’t narrate your video. Your commentary can be used against you and that of your passengers. Take your photographs and write down the facts. Don’t offer a commentary or your opinion or say anything about your injuries or that of your passengers. It doesn’t matter if you were the cause of the accident, the person in the middle trying to break or the last person smashing into the rest of the cars, refrain from live streaming the accident.
When someone you love is involved in an accident the emotions you feel could cloud your thinking, so it’s imperative to take a deep breath and calm your nerves. Don’t give unnecessary details to insurance adjusters or accept a settlement offer until you’ve talked to an attorney. Accepting an early settlement could compromise any ongoing care your love one may need in the future. So it’s important that you have an attorney who is experienced with injury cases, dealing with insurance litigation and understands the future ramifications of health care needs.
The Law Offices of David W. Holub is a personal injury law firm located in Merrillville, Indiana, focused on providing efficient and effective client-centered representation. Our mission is to provide top quality legal representation, which includes an uncompromising pursuit of our client’s legal interests, while being accessible and attentive to our clients during times of personal challenge.
The firm concentrates in personal injury cases of all types, medical malpractice, and wrongful death litigation. We work tirelessly to serve each client aggressively and with empathy, to communicate regularly and clearly, and to obtain prompt and favorable results, while adhering to the highest standards of excellence and integrity. Our team considers it a high honor to be called upon to serve our clients whom we often come to regard as our friends.
Call today to speak to our friendly attorneys, pick up the phone and dial (219)736-9700.
If you would like to learn more about personal injury law, we encourage you to listen to our Personal Injury Primer Podcast where we break down the law into simple terms, provide legal tips, and discuss topics related to personal injury law. And read “Fighting For Truth: A Trial Lawyer’s Insight Into What It Takes To Win” an entertaining and enlightening book pulling readers into the courtroom giving them a glimpse of the legal process and what it takes to win at trial.