What to Avoid Saying After a Car Accident to Protect Your Claim

Posted on behalf of Peter T. Nicholl in Car Accidents Published on February 26, 2020 and updated on March 7, 2022.

talking after a car crashWhat you say immediately following a car accident may come back to hurt you if you decide to pursue compensation for your injuries. It is important to avoid making costly mistakes during this hectic time to protect your potential claim.

The Maryland car accident attorneys at our firm explain certain statements to avoid when talking to anyone involved in the collision. Learn more from our lawyers during a free, no-obligation consultation.

How Words Could Hurt a Claim

After a crash, adrenaline is high and you may not be thinking clearly. Your pain from resulting injuries can also impact your thinking and the things you may say. It is easy to say something in the spur of the moment, which could hurt your ability to recover compensation for any damages you sustained.

For some of us, offering an apology comes naturally – but something as simple as, “I am sorry,” could be construed as admitting fault. While you may simply be sorry that an accident occurred or a person was hurt in general, someone could take this sentiment as your admission of blame for the crash.

Your Words May Be Inaccurate

You do not have all the facts about what took place in that moment. If you make statements regarding what happened, you may be wrong, but your words could be used against you in the claims process.

When speaking to the other driver involved, only give the information you are legally obligated to provide after an accident. When questioned by a responding law enforcement officer, only provide the facts. Avoid speculating about anything that may have occurred or guessing if you do not know the answer to a question – simply reply that you do not know if you do not know. Do not offer up any information beyond the answers to questions specifically asked of you by the law enforcement officer.

Even if you think you may have caused the accident or done something that contributed to the accident, it is best to avoid saying so after a collision. You could be wrong, but if you say that you are at fault at the accident scene, it may be harder to refute later to an insurance adjuster.

Anything You Say Could Be Misunderstood

A car accident scene can be a chaotic environment – it may be loud and difficult to hear something. Any statement you make may not be heard as you intended it to be, which could lead to statements you made hurting your claim.

If you discuss the incident with a witness at the scene, he or she may not hear you correctly and misconstrue your statement. A statement such as, “I was alert,” may be misheard as, “I was not alert,” changing the meaning of your statement entirely and showing that you may be at fault for the accident.

If you are injured, it is impossible to know the severity of your injuries at the accident scene. Do not say you are okay or fine, because you do not know if this is true. If you say you are fine, the insurance adjuster may later use this against you to disprove your injuries.

Our Lawyers Are Ready to Help

If you were injured in a car accident, our lawyers at The Law Offices of Peter T. Nicholl are ready to assist you. You may be eligible to seek compensation for your medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering. We have recovered millions in verdicts and settlements for our clients.

Request a free consultation to get started. There are no upfront fees to pay if you choose to work with our firm. We work on contingency, meaning you do not pay unless we recover compensation for you.

We are here to help. Call 410-244-7005.