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What Should You Do If You Are in a Car Accident?

If you are involved in a New York car accident, it is important to understand what New York State law requires you to do.

According to the New York Department of Motor Vehicles, the following are some actions you must take:

When in a Car Accident, Stop and Exchange Information

You must stop and exchange information with the other drivers involved in the accident.

  • For property damage only
    Exchange your driver license, insurance and registration information with the other drivers.
  • For a parked vehicle or other property damage or injury of domestic animal
    Locate the owner and contact the police.
  • For property damage that is $1001 or more
    All the drivers involved must file a report (MV-104) of the motor vehicle accident with the DMV within no more than 10 days after the accident. If you fail to report the accident, the DMV can suspend your driver’s license.
  • If a person is injured or killed
    Notify the police immediately. All the involved drivers must file an accident report with the DMV. It is a crime to leave an accident scene where personal injury or death occurred. The accident will appear on all the drivers’ records. However, the record of the accident will not indicate who was at fault.

Seek Medical Attention

If you or anyone else is seriously injured, call 911 and seek medical attention right away. Keep records of medical treatment that you have received.

Take Pictures of the Accident Scene

If you are able to take pictures of the accident scene, do so. Many people have cameras on their mobile phones. Take pictures of the vehicle damage, skid marks or other details that could provide relevant evidence in your accident case.

Talk to Witnesses

Get the names and contact information from any witnesses who saw the accident.

File a Report with Your Insurance Company

Let your insurance company know that you were involved in the accident and how it occurred. Be honest in your description of what happened.

If You Suffered Significant Injury, Contact a Lawyer and Limit Your Discussion About the Accident

You should only discuss the accident with your lawyer, the police and your insurance company. Do not discuss the accident with other drivers’ insurance companies or other parties unless your attorney advises you to do so.

At Sackstein Sackstein & Lee, LLP we have decades of experience and focus our practice primarily on personal injury cases.


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