What Qualifies as a Minor Car Accident, and What Should You Do After One?

What Qualifies as a Minor Car Accident and What Should You Do After One?

Posted by: Joanne Holcomb on May 23, 2023

Traffic accidents can take place anywhere and happen to anybody. Every single day, several million drivers share roadways nationwide, which increases the chances of both major and minor car accidents. Although they are far less severe in nature, even minor traffic accidents can lead to serious injuries and heavy property damage. 

Being able to identify what differentiates a major car accident from a minor one is helpful when determining if and how you should proceed with a claim.

Working with a skilled nationwide auto accident lawyer can help make sure that your right to compensation is protected and that you obtain a financial settlement that covers your damages. 

At Local Accident Reports, we provide reliable legal guidance and support for car accident victims across the United States. We are dedicated to helping our injured clients collect the maximum amount of compensation available for their damages. 

We offer a free initial case review, and our lawyers work on a contingency fee, meaning that you pay nothing unless we win your case. Contact us today to find out more about how we can help after a car accident. 

What Are Some Differences Between Major and Minor Car Accidents?

Minor Car Accidents Major Car Accidents
  • Low degree of force
  • Minor vehicle damage  
  • Typically occur at low speeds
  • No or minor injuries
  • Might not require an attorney
  • High degree of force
  • Often numerous points of impact
  • Major vehicle damage  
  • Take place at moderate to high speed
  • Severe, life-threatening injuries or fatalities
  • Will almost certainly require an attorney

What Should I Do After a Minor Traffic Accident?

What Qualifies as a Minor Car Accident, and What Should You Do After One?

In most instances, a minor car accident needs to be handled in much the same way as a more serious collision. Although it might sound unnecessary to spend the same amount of attention and time on a small fender bender as you would a crash that totaled two vehicles and put victims in the hospital, it is important to have a detailed report regarding what happened, starting with appropriate documentation at the scene.  

Check Everyone for Injuries

After a car accident, even a minor one, the first thing you should always do is to check yourself and any passengers that were riding with you for any injuries. If necessary, you can call 911 and receive medical aid or transportation from emergency medics. 

Even if it appears as though no one was injured, it is too soon to dismiss the possibility. The force of the impact from even a minor crash can cause an adrenaline rush that can mask any physical pain, and injuries that are not immediately obvious might not show any symptoms until hours or even days after the accident, such as whiplash and traumatic brain injuries

Get to a Safe Place

After an accident, you need to get everyone from your vehicle to a safe area. If your vehicle is still drivable and creating a potential hazard in its current spot, you should pull off to the side of the road. If your vehicle is inoperable or inaccessible, move to a sidewalk or to the side of the road.  

Document the Scene

After evaluating everyone for any potential injuries and getting to a location away from any further danger, you can start gathering relevant evidence. This will be extremely important in establishing which driver is mostly or entirely at fault. 

Make sure that you take pictures and videos from as many different angles as possible. Try to include any damage to the vehicles, and the other car’s license plates, along with pictures of the scene itself, surrounding streets, and anything else you think might be important. 

If anyone from your vehicle has visible injuries, you should take pictures of those as well.   

Call the Police 

Always request a police officer to respond to the scene of an accident, no matter how trivial it might seem. If there are serious injuries or other emergencies, call 911. If paramedics are not needed, tell the dispatcher that you only need a police officer on the scene. You can do this by calling either 911 or the police non-emergency services number. The goal is to get a police officer to respond to the scene and create a police report.  

Exchange Insurance and Contact Details

Calmly ask to swap insurance and contact details with the other drivers involved. Be sure to get their first and last name, address, phone number, and insurance policy information, including the name and phone number of their insurance company. If feasible, ask for contact details from any passengers in the other vehicles.  

Notify Your Insurance Company

As soon as you are able to do so, you need to call your insurance company and give them all of the information you have collected regarding your accident. No matter who is at fault, this is an important step because it could protect you from any potential claims the other driver might try to make.

Keep in mind that calling your insurance company is not optional, as they require policyholders to promptly report any collision that might require coverage. Every company has a specific period of time during which reporting a crash is required. Failure to do so, even for a minor accident, might result in the termination of your auto policy.

Once these steps have been taken, you can start the claims process if you want to seek financial recovery for any damages or other personal injuries.

Talk with a Car Accident Lawyer Today

If you were injured in a car accident, whether it was a serious collision or a minor fender bender, reach out to the nationwide car accident lawyers at Local Accident Reports right away. We have a hard-earned track record of achieving successful case resolutions for our injured clients. Call Local Accident Reports at (888) 657-1460 to schedule your free case review and find out what plan of action our experienced attorneys recommend for your case.