What Happens If You Don’t Exchange Information After a Car Accident?

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After a car crash, emotions can run high and tensions can rise. A hostile driver who refuses to give you their insurance information may worsen this problematic situation. This is also often a red flag that the other driver is intoxicated, doesn’t have insurance, or is trying to hide something.

Parties collect insurance information because it is essential in filing an accident claim. However, another driver refusing to give you their insurance or registration info is not cause for alarm.

Despite the driver’s refusal to cooperate and provide the insurance card, you may be able to get everything you need. The golden rule is to always call the police so there is documentation of the wreck.

If you don’t exchange insurance information with the other driver you’re in an accident with, follow these steps:

Take Care of Yourself

The shock of an accident can cause you to lose focus on what’s happening right now. If possible, move your car to a safe spot after checking yourself and your passengers for injuries.

Police Should Be Notified of the Accident

Report any accident to 911 immediately after it occurs — even before exchanging insurance details. An accident report will be prepared by the police detailing how the accident occurred. A police officer should be called to the accident scene, and the scene should be documented. The police officer will make sure to document insurance information.

Details of the report will include:

  • When and where the accident occurred
  • The road conditions just before the accident
  • Accident-related factors

The insurance company will utilize this police report to determine which driver was at fault for the crash. If the other motorist refuses to cooperate, the police can also get the insurance information you need.

Remember the Details of the Accident

Start writing down memories with a pen and paper, or open your phone’s notes app.

Almost any detail about the accident scene and the vehicle or individual involved is fair game, so a license plate number, the color, make or model of the other vehicle, or any details about the driver can be useful.

Concentrate on getting it all down so you won’t end up staring at a blank page.

Take Pictures

Carrying a smartphone around always allows you to take high-quality pictures anytime.

It is important to take pictures of every aspect of the accident — the outside of your car, any damage it sustained, and the surrounding area.

Police may be able to locate the other driver even if they have only the tiniest details about the accident.

See If There Are Any Witnesses Around

There’s a good chance everyone around you has a phone, so someone else may have also recorded evidence of your accident. Bystanders may be able to inform you about details you missed even if no one nearby took a photo or video, such as the direction the driver went after the accident or its identifying features.

Make sure your insurance company or the police has the contact information of your witnesses just in case they need to contact them in the future.

Calmly Await the Arrival of the Police

Don’t get into a frenzied conflict with the other driver if they are being difficult and won’t provide you with their insurance information. A car accident is stressful, but you don’t want to get into trouble by getting emotional.

A wild argument won’t accomplish anything if the other driver doesn’t cooperate immediately.

Until the police come, remain calm. As soon as the police officers arrive and talk to you, they will gather the insurance information for both parties and hand it over.

It would help if you took as many photos of the accident scene as possible while waiting and talking to witnesses.

When the police request specific information, the other motorist can’t refuse to supply it. You must be calm and wait for an officer to obtain it. If the other motorist declines to share their insurance information, let the police officers know so they can hand it off to you.

Get in Touch With Your Insurance Provider

You should still contact your insurance company about the incident even if the other driver fled the scene or refused to provide information. Aside from requiring you to get in touch within a reasonable timeframe, your insurance carrier may also do some work for you.

Suppose you’re involved in a car accident with an uninsured or underinsured motorist. Will your auto insurance policy cover you?

It depends on who is responsible, but in most cases, the other motorist’s insurance pays for your car’s damage and any medical bills associated with the accident.

What does that mean for you if you don’t get the insurance information from the other driver?

For this reason, you need to have enough insurance for yourself — just in case the other driver doesn’t.

Consider Your Legal Options

If you were hurt in a wreck caused by another driver, the other driver’s insurance company might not immediately offer you a reasonable settlement.

The other driver may have declined to convey their insurance information because they do not have insurance or their policy does not protect the damage to your car and your medical costs.

Verify your auto insurance policy today to determine if you are covered for uninsured or underinsured drivers.

A lawyer can assist you in seeking financial compensation from the other driver if you wish.

You can recover compensation for your losses by filing an uninsured motorist claim (UM). You will need to file an underinsured motorist (UIM) claim under your policy if the other motorist has insurance but not enough to adequately cover your damages.

You have a better chance of getting a fair settlement from the other driver’s insurance company if an experienced lawyer represents you.

If the insurer’s representatives refuse to make a reasonable settlement offer, the insurer is more likely to end up in court.

Get in Touch With an Experienced Car Accident Lawyer in Wilmington, NC

If you were injured in a car wreck and the other motorist was uncooperative, you might be able to pursue compensation from the responsible motorist with the help of an experienced personal injury lawyer.

The car accident lawyers of Horton & Mendez have the knowledge and experience to defend car crash victims across the state.

Contact us to get your free case consultation.

Car Accident FAQs

When should I call a lawyer after a car accident?

As soon as possible. The early help of an attorney can significantly increase the chances of getting the compensation you deserve.

What if the other driver refuses to cooperate after an accident?

Call the police as soon as you can.

How long will it take to get compensation?

While every case is different, resolving your claim will take at least a few weeks or months.

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