What NOT to Say After a Car Accident

If you or somebody you love has been involved in a car accident, there are various steps that you can take to help ensure that you recover any compensation you may be entitled to for your injuries or property damage. However, you have to be careful about what you say in the aftermath of a vehicle accident, both at the scene of the crash and in conversations with those in the days and weeks following the incident. Here, we want to give you a list of things you should not say after a vehicle accident occurs.

“I’m not hurt”

You need to seek medical care after a vehicle accident occurs, even if you do not feel much pain. The reality is that the signs and symptoms of some car accident injuries do not appear for days or weeks after the incident occurs. If you decide not to seek medical care right away, this could be used as evidence by the insurance carrier to say you were not injured at all, even if delayed symptoms do arise.
By seeking medical care, you are taking the steps necessary to ensure your well-being by possibly uncovering unseen injuries. You are also establishing a direct link between the crash and any injuries you sustained.

“I think that…”

In the aftermath of an accident, you will likely have to give multiple statements. First, you should not give a statement without speaking to a personal injury lawyer first. Second, do not speculate when you are giving answers asked by other parties. If you say that you “think” you know the answer, this is not definitive. When you offer speculations or approximations, this could be used by other parties or the insurance carriers to say that you really have no idea what happened.
Stick to the facts and make no speculations.

“I accept the offer”

Very soon after an accident occurs that was caused by the careless or negligent actions of another driver, you will likely receive a settlement offer from their insurance carrier. The offer may even come before you know the full extent of your injuries or property damage expenses. Please understand that initial settlement offers are likely far below what you should actually be receiving, and these are attempts by the insurance carrier to get away with paying less money. Never accept an offer until after you have reached maximum medical improvement and you have a good grasp of your total expenses.

“I do not have an attorney”

If you tell any party involved that you are not seeking assistance from an attorney, this opens the door to them trying to take advantage of you. Vehicle accident cases can become incredibly complicated, especially if fault is disputed. A skilled lawyer can use their resources to fully investigate each claim, determine liability, and negotiate with all parties involved to help ensure that you receive a fair settlement.

“I caused this accident”

You should never admit fault in the aftermath of a vehicle accident, even if you are convinced that you caused the incident. You never know the full facts and circumstances surrounding other possible causes of the accident. By accepting fault, you take away almost all chances of recovering compensation for the claim. Oregon operates under a modified comparative neighborhood system, which means that victims can recover compensation even if they are up to 50% responsible for the incident.