What to Do If You’ve Been Injured in an Out-of-State Car Accident
Car accidents can come out of nowhere and completely change your life. Not only do you have to deal with the physical and emotional pain from any injuries you get from the collision, but you also have to worry about the financial side of things, like medical bills, mechanic costs, and lost wages from missing work. When the auto wreck was not in your home state, though, you can have even more difficulty dealing with the effects and navigating your next steps.
If you’re from Kentucky and have questions about your out-of-state car accident, then you’ll want to talk to the car accident attorneys at Golden Law Office because we have ample experience. We can help you navigate your claim process, but first let’s look at the steps you should take immediately after your car accident when it’s out-of-state.
Steps to Take After an Out-of-State Car Accident
Your initial steps to take after an out-of-state auto wreck will be the same as after an in-state car accident. In case you don’t know those steps, here are the actions to take immediately after a car accident to ensure that you get the best care and have the most proof for filing a case later:
- Check If You’re Injured. Take a moment to be aware of your body and your surroundings and figure out if you might be injured. If you suspect you’re seriously injured, it’s safest for you to stay put until emergency services arrive. If you’re okay to get out and move around, you should get out of your car and out of traffic’s way as best you can.
- Call 911. If you’re able to, call 911 so that police and medical services can arrive on the scene as quickly as possible. EMS will be able to evaluate your injuries immediately and the police will be able to document the scene and get statements from you, the other driver, and any witnesses, which could help your case later. While you’re waiting, take pictures of the scene and any injuries that are visible for more proof.
- Exchange Information. Regardless of the state laws on fault, it’s safest to exchange names, a method of contact information like a phone number, insurance information, and the make and model of the other driver’s car since you will most likely need all these details later on. When you’re doing this, make sure you don’t apologize or blame the other driver, regardless of the situation, because either could be used against you later on in your claim.
- Contact Your Insurance. Your auto insurer will need to know what happened in order to process your insurance claim, so you will need to reach out to them and explain the situation. They will most likely also need proof of the accident and any injuries that you sustained.
- Hire a Lawyer. Hiring a car accident attorney can help you through your car accident claim and ensure that the other driver is held responsible for their accidents while you focus on healing.
How Does This Apply to Kentucky Drivers?
For Kentucky drivers, an out-of-state car accident claim can be difficult to navigate if the state’s laws on fault are different from ours. We are a no-fault state, which means that you file a claim with your own insurance for compensation, no matter who was at fault for the accident. Many other states do not handle fault this way, though, so you might need added guidance for your claim.
Since you’re from Kentucky, your insurance could be different from the insurance policies in the state where you were in the accident. Under Kentucky law, your insurance must cover at least $25,000 for bodily injury per person, $50,000 for total bodily injury for all persons in one accident, and $25,000 for all property damage in one accident. But since the accident was not your fault, the other driver’s insurance would be required to cover your injuries, depending on that state’s laws on fault.
Depending on which state your collision occurred in, you might have to prove you did not contribute to the accident at all in order to get compensation, or you could be 40 percent at fault and still recover compensation for the 60 percent of costs that were the other driver’s fault. That’s where a car accident lawyer comes in because we are experienced in situations like this and can guide you through the complexities of an out-of-state car accident.
Golden Law Office in Lexington, Kentucky can provide you with the representation you need in order to navigate an out-of-state car accident claim if you’re from our state. Reach out to our office today so that we can discuss your options.
How Long Should Children Be in Rear-Facing Car Seats?