Steps You Should Take After Being Injured by A Government Vehicle
Getting into an accident with a government vehicle is different than other motor vehicle accidents. Usually, dealing with insurance companies is not an option in government vehicle collisions, and in most cases, you will have to coordinate with the government directly. This is where things get difficult, as the government is often granted immunity in this type of situation.
The U.S. government often has a shorter statute of limitations for most auto incidents, allowing you no more than 180 days to begin a lawsuit in many cases. That’s why if you have recently been injured in a collision with a government vehicle , you will want to hire an experienced attorney to help you file your claim as soon as possible. From mail trucks to Humvees, if you have been injured in crash involving a government vehicle, follow the steps below, and call Silbowitz, Garafola, Silbowitz, Schatz & Frederick, L.L.P. for reliable personal injury representation.
Step #1: Seek Medical Attention
As is the case with any accident, seeking medical attention should be paramount to all other concerns in the immediate aftermath. Whether you have been injured by a large vehicle, like a postal truck, or by a regular car, if there is even a chance you may be injured, make sure to see a doctor. Even common symptoms like dizziness and confusion can indicate larger medical problems, such as brain injuries. Your health and well-being come first following accidents—seek medical treatment now, and be ready to use your treatment as evidence later.
Step #2: Contact the Authorities
Another standard step following any accident, ensuring the police are on the scene to protect your safety and the safety of those around you is key in the wake of a government vehicle collision. This is also an action which will be important later, when we circle back to utilizing a police report.
Step #3: Take Photos
Taking photos of the vehicles involved in the accident is extremely important, as you will need particularly in-depth documentation when dealing with the government. Damage to your vehicle, injuries, and any other physical indication of what happened at the scene should all be photographed, as the more evidence you have of what happened the better your case will be.
Step #4: Exchange Information
Following up with both witnesses and police officers is a huge part of mounting a successful case following an accident. License plates, insurance information, phone and email contacts, and badge numbers of all officers at the scene should be collected. This will not only help establish the facts surrounding the incident, but lay the groundwork for witnesses to testify that the government vehicle was responsible for the wreck.
Step #5: Follow Up
After collecting all the pertinent information needed to mount your case, you will want to follow up with everyone at the scene as soon as possible to let them know you are planning on filing a claim. This will let you coordinate with any witnesses on evidence or other relevant information, and give everyone at the scene of the incident time to prepare their account of what happened.
Step #6: Request Police Reports and Medical Records
There are few things more helpful when dealing with the government than official documentation. If you can secure the police report detailing the accident, and any medical records that support these details, it will be much harder for the government to dispute your testimony.
Step #7: Hire an Experienced Attorney
As important as it is to collect evidence and talk with police and witnesses, it will not be possible to take on the federal government without a skilled attorney by your side. In addition to assisting you in the previous steps, the right attorney will be able to file all the necessary paperwork, and guide you through what to say to give you the best shot at winning your case. Moreover, when you are dealing with the government, it is essential to have representation who truly understands the ins and outs of the legal system, and can help quickly and efficiently craft a strong argument that will resonate with the court.
At Silbowitz, Garafola, Silbowitz, Schatz & Frederick, L.L.P., our New York City personal injury attorneys have been standing up for the rights of victims since 1987. From auto accidents to mass tort litigation, we believe that the powerful should never take advantage of the people they are supposed to protect. Don’t let the government prevent you from receiving the compensation you deserve. Call Silbowitz, Garafola, Silbowitz, Schatz & Frederick, L.L.P. today, and hire a firm known for results.
Call now at (646) 681-7055 to speak to an attorney, or click here to schedule your free case evaluation online.