Car accidents occur far too often, and afterward, something that also takes place too frequently is the at-fault driver wanting to make the incident go away by offering the other party money at the scene. Unfortunately, many drivers make the mistake of accepting the cash.
While a few hundred dollar bills may tempt you, you always want to follow proper protocol following an auto accident.
1. You may be more hurt than you think
After any traumatic event, such as a car accident, you may not realize your neck is sore. You always want to see a doctor following a car crash of any severity. Your insurance will cover most or all of the medical costs, but if you choose not to report the accident, then you get nothing for those bills. Even if the doctor only needs to treat something relatively simple, you could still pay thousands of dollars out of your own pocket.
2. Your car may hide damage
Most replacement bumpers cost anywhere between $300 and $700. Therefore, if the other driver offers you less than those amounts, you definitely do not want to take the money. There could also be damage hiding within the body. For instance, if the collision damaged the muffler or another component of the emissions system, then you could be looking at a bill exceeding $1,000.
3. It could be a scam
Offering some money is an easy way for at-fault drivers to absolve themselves of any repercussions. However, some drivers have far more nefarious plans. One scam that is more common than most people realize is that an at-fault driver will offer money to the other party so that he or she will not call the incident in. After that person has left, the at-fault drivers contact the police and say they were in a hit-and-run. Therefore, the other driver becomes liable, and unfortunately, there is no way to prove otherwise.
This blog entry was posted on behalf of Hof & Reid LLC, and does not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of the firm or its attorneys. The information presented in this blog is for informational purposes only and is not intended to be legal advice.