Top 5 Mistakes After an Ontario Car Accident
Nobody will wish to be involved in a car accident. It’s a traumatic experience but is important you understand proper Ontario car accident reporting. There’s a logical reason why safety is the utmost priority in putting together road and traffic laws. You want to feel safe on the road as much as you want to enjoy your driving experience.
However, nobody prepares for anything wrong that might happen on the road. Certainly, driving schools will equip just you on how to drive properly, read signs, perform immediate troubleshoot vehicle problems, and avoid any untoward situations while driving.
But do you know what to do after a car accident? Are you fully informed of your legal rights? Do you know what laws in the province of Ontario cover road accidents? Are you aware of the things that you should do and should not do?
These questions are very real. Unfortunately, these become obscure and possibly the last questions that will come to mind when you’re in a car accident situation. Worse, in the middle of panic, frustration, anger, and confusion, you will commit a lot of mistakes you wouldn’t even know will put you in a more difficult situation.
This article will tackle the top 5 mistakes Ontario drivers commit after a car accident. At the same time discuss important actions to easily contain the situation and follow proper accident reporting.
Mistake # 1: Not calling the authorities
When Ontario drivers are involved in a minor car accident, both drivers decide to assess the situation themselves and decide to not involve the police. Ontario accident reporting demonstrates that around 60% of this situation occurring.
There’s a lot of factors why this is happening: damages may look minimal, nobody is seriously hurt, both drivers are in a good disposition and are willing to talk things through, or both drivers are in a hurry and are not willing to go through the timely process of properly dealing with the accident.
Whatever the reasons may be, this mistake impedes legal procedure, results in insurance claims hitches over your insurance policy, and worse, can be dangerous for unevaluated personal injury claims in Ontario.
Even if Ontario law allows drivers to opt not to call the police when vehicle damages are below $1,000 (Instead you call a Collision Report Centre), it’s extremely important to remember that not all drivers are auto mechanics or have any mechanical knowledge about vehicles or the true total damage. Therefore, not everybody is qualified to make an assessment of the extent of vehicle damages. More importantly, some damages are not visually apparent. There could be a lot of damages under the car that can’t be immediately observed.
On the other hand, not all drivers have a medical background, which means that they can’t immediately evaluate one’s physical state or injuries after the accident. Adrenaline and shock will also come into play after the collision, which means that the feeling of being hurt may not be present 100% of the time in the middle of the situation.
Mistake # 2: Admitting fault
While it’s an extremely honest behaviour, admitting fault immediately after the car accident is never a good idea. Absolutely not a best practice! Even if you think you’re to blame for the accident.
Ontario accident reporting and laws provide a clear process for assessing the accident and determining who’s at fault. There are experts for this type of job; people who have been educated and trained to legally determine fault. The process considers all the angles and even the most minute facts surrounding the accident.
Immediately saying “sorry” is an admission of guilt and complicates the investigation thereafter. This leads to more legal troubles later on, which will be a grave disadvantage on the driver admitting the fault.
Mistake # 3: Negotiating with the other driver
A direct next step of the previous mistake is the compulsion to negotiate with the other driver. When the driver admits a mistake and establishes fault, the next impulsive action is to negotiate with the other driver. It’s extremely tempting, especially if the goal is not to make a big deal out of the situation or plainly, just to keep the incident off the record.
When the vehicle damage looks very minimal and nobody appears to be hurt or injured (Which is when a Collision Reporting Centre is needed), the drivers mostly choose to just settle for the damages for an agreed amount of money to avoid increases in car insurance They may not even contact their auto insurance provider to avoid any increase in insurance rates.
Sounds like a good idea, right? The incident is settled fast and the decision made is cost-effective.
Well, not entirely. Again, not everybody is qualified to make an assessment out of a car accident as you may not know of the combined damage of both vehicles. There’s a proper legal process and there are experts who can determine the extent of the damages. Negotiating may get you out of the situation pretty fast and within your budget, but the repercussions are serious.
There’s a number of possibilities that can happen: the other driver may turn against you and turn in a fraudulent insurance claim against you or the insurance company can deny you of coverage if the time window for reporting accidents has lapsed.
Mistake # 4: Not seeking medical attention
Undermining your physical condition and injuries is extremely dangerous. Even if you don’t feel hurt, which could be just the adrenaline taking over your body, you should always get a physician to check you.
A lot of Ontario drivers do this and regret later on. Worse, they end up having a lot of challenges filing an insurance claim since insurance companies tend to red flag those who wait to seek medical attention.
Mistake # 5: Not gathering enough evidence for your Ontario accident report
Insufficient evidence is one of the most prevalent scenarios of Ontario accident reporting. This leads to inadequate information for lawyers to kick-off their investigation surrounding the car accident. One of the greatest mistakes of drivers after a car accident is leaving the scene without collecting enough evidence that can be used for multiple reasons later on.
The best way to rectify these mistakes is to avoid committing them. Being aware of these five most common mistakes that drivers do after an Ontario car accident is the first step. The rule of thumb is to always get the authorities involved and have yourself medically examined after the car accident. Our team here at Pourgol Law of car accident lawyers in the Toronto and GTA can help you effectively pursue legal action.