No one expects to have a vacation derailed by an accident on the road. Understanding what to do in the case of a car accident can be confusing if you are renting a car or traveling out-of-state. Luckily, wherever you are in the U.S. when you are traveling, if you are injured you have a right to justice and compensation through the civil justice system. Unfortunately, navigating the out-of-state process can get tricky but there are some simple steps to follow.
Address the obvious
Regardless of where you are, always contact the police when an accident occurs. Law enforcement needs to investigate the crash, and you need to provide the same information and details as if the accident occurred in your home state. Write down all the important information concerning the crash:
- The name of the agency investigating the crash
- The insurance and contact information for the other driver
- The contact information for any witnesses
- The details of what took place with supporting pictures
You should seek medical attention as well for whiplash or other injuries. Use a facility in the state where the crash occurred and follow up with your primary care physician when you return home. You need to report the accident to your insurance company as well.
Figure out the next steps
When it comes to legal action, the law defines allowable recourse. For example, with an out-of-state incident, those seeking compensation have a requirement to file the suit in the state where the accident occurred or where the at-fault driver resides. This could mean contacting a lawyer who works in Hawaii if that is where you were in an accident.
Accidents occurring out-of-state get treated the same as in-state accidents. Get the appropriate medical attention, gather appropriate documentation and information, and pursue recourse according to the law’s provisions.