Getting into a car accident is a highly stressful situation, regardless of how severe the collision. Even a fender bender can have long-lasting repercussions, and more serious accidents can wreak physical and emotional havoc on a person. Some collisions can even cause post-traumatic stress disorder. While most people are clear about the need to do something after a massive accident, what happens when the accident is so minor it only damages your car?
You might think that an accident this minor leaves you with no legal recourse, but this is not the case. Even the most minor accident may require you to take action and seek compensation. If the other driver was at fault, you should receive reimbursement for the property damage he or she caused. Here are three steps to follow after an accident that damages your car.
Consider whether you are injured
If an accident is so minor that it appears to only cause damage to your car, you might rule out the possibility that you have sustained an injury. With no visible bruises or lacerations, it is easy to make such an assumption. Some serious injuries caused by collisions, however, have symptoms that do not appear immediately. According to the Mayo Clinic, for example, whiplash symptoms can appear days after a collision. Only a medical professional can rule out the possibility of an injury.
Seek recourse for property damage
Regardless of your physical condition, you can and should seek full compensation for the property damage that has occurred because of the accident. Ideally, insurance will cover the expenses, but this is not always the case.
Consult a legal representative
It is wise to consult a legal representative before interacting with insurers and answering their questions. Ultimately, insurance agents will likely try to minimize your damages or deny your claim in order to avoid compensating you. Consulting an attorney can help you better understand your rights and help you get the medical care or damages that you may be entitled to after a collision.