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Auto accidents can throw even the most diligent drivers off guard. The shock and pain sustained from a crash can cause motorists to make significant mistakes in its aftermath, through no fault of their own. If you were in a collision, it’s crucial to understand these errors, how they arise and how you can prevent them.

Admitting you’re at fault

No matter whether you caused the accident, admitting you’re at fault makes you the liable party. Even apologizing to the other driver could count as a declaration of guilt. Any such statement is grounds for use against you later when you’re trying to make an insurance claim. To determine liability, it’s crucial you call the police. They will survey the scene and account for driver and witness statements. And their assessment will create a better picture of who is at-fault.

Failing to report the accident

By Michigan law, drivers do not have to report any accident where total damages are below $1,000. Yet, filing an accident report puts the incident on record. And it can serve as a precaution in case the damages exceed the original estimate. You may suffer from delayed injuries. Or, the damage to your vehicle may prove more extensive or costly than you perceived at first. By filing a report within three days of your accident, you may have grounds for recourse that you would miss out on otherwise.

Failing to file an insurance claim

Filing an insurance claim is crucial, no matter how minor your accident. Yet, many drivers fail to do so and miss out on coverage when they need it. In Michigan, you have one year after the date of your crash to make a claim. Because the state requires drivers to carry no-fault auto insurance, you will file it through your own policy. To receive proper benefits, you must document the scene to present a full extent of the crash’s damage. And you must see a doctor right away to make record of any injuries you incurred.
 
Ignoring long-term consequences
 
Your accident may have resulted in lost wages. Or, it may have caused pain and suffering that has diminished your quality of life. Unfortunately, your insurance policy will not compensate for these damages. In these cases, you will have to pursue recourse through a civil lawsuit against the other driver. By failing to consider these impacts, your settlement will come up short of what you deserve.
 
Accounting for every factor of an auto accident will help you avoid common mistakes other motorists make. If you were injured in a crash, a personal injury attorney can guide you down the road forward.