Getting into a vehicle accident is one of everyone’s worst fears since it can come with life-altering consequences. If you have been in an accident, there are certain things you need to do so you can build a strong claim. One of the most important things you need to do is exchange information with the other driver who was involved.
What happens if you don’t exchange information after an accident? How can it impact your case? At the Maguire Law Firm, our Myrtle Beach car accident attorneys handle all kinds of vehicular crashes, committed to helping the injured get the compensation they deserve.
Why Do Parties in an Accident Exchange Insurance Information?
Everyone should remember that when you get in a car accident, you are supposed to exchange information with the other driver involved. It is important to do this because it allows both parties to get in touch with one another about the details of the accident. Exchanging insurance information can help you get compensation to cover damages or injuries from the other insurer as a result of the accident.
The other driver’s insurance information is also important if you need to hire an auto accident attorney. They need this information so that they can contact the insurance provider to discuss a fair settlement. After all, the insurance company will ultimately cover your damages, so this is who your lawyer will be communicating with directly.
Is exchanging information a requirement in South Carolina?
Every state is different, but many require drivers to exchange insurance information after an accident. South Carolina is one of those states, as it requires you to exchange personal information, as well as your insurance information, with the other involved parties.
Some criminal penalties may apply if a person was in a car accident where no information was exchanged. It depends on the situation and whether or not the accident was reported or if the driver left the scene of the accident.
What Can You Do if You Don’t Know the Other Party’s Insurance?
There are some car accidents where the other driver may refuse to give you their insurance information. This can happen if the other driver knows they are at fault or if they are acting very aggressively.
If the police have already arrived at the accident, you could request that an officer help you get the information you need from the other driver. The police also need this information for their police report, so they may have it recorded themselves.
If you had a driver leave the scene of the accident without getting insurance info from the other party, you can always request your attorney to investigate for you. They have far more resources and should be able to track down the other driver or get the information from the completed police report.
Remember to never confront the other driver when you are getting their insurance information. You want to remain cordial and calm and only get the information you need so that you can file a claim later. If the other driver is acting very aggressively, you may want to remove yourself from the situation until the police arrive.
Other Parties You Should Exchange Information With
After exchanging your insurance information with the other driver, exchanging information with others at the scene is a good idea. You only need to give the other driver and the police your insurance information, but you should get contact information from anyone who was a witness to the collision.
You don’t need to try to collect witness statements since these are not going to have much subsidence for your case if you get them on your own. You should get the contact information of witnesses so that your attorney can contact them at a later date to get their official statement.
What Happens if You Were Physically Unable to Exchange Information?
Car accidents can have serious implications to your health depending on how hard you were hit. Some drivers may not be physically able to exchange information with the other driver. You may have been rushed to the hospital or immediately received medical care on the scene.
If this is the case, you will not be held responsible for not exchanging your information. The police report should include the insurance and contact information that the other driver and your lawyer can access. Or if there was a passenger in the vehicle with you who wasn’t harmed, they can exchange information with the other driver on your behalf.
Hire a Myrtle Beach Auto Accident Lawyer Today
Getting into an auto accident can feel like an overwhelming process since there are so many different steps you need to take, including the critical step of exchanging insurance information This is legally required in South Carolina and an important part of submitting a claim to the right party.
At the Maguire Law Firm, our attorneys are experienced in all kinds of auto accidents, from motorcycle to truck to drunk driving accidents. Whether you’ve been hit by a driver who fled the scene or couldn’t physically gather insurance information, let our lawyers help. Contact us today to schedule a free evaluation at 843-894-3502.