In any state, no laws state whether a driver can continue to drive the same vehicle after an accident. There are reasons it is best not to drive the vehicle, but in some situations, the vehicle needs to be repaired and put back in commission as soon as possible.
Listed below are some reasons why an individual should not drive a vehicle after an accident, why they should get their vehicle back rolling again, and the best measures to take when the vehicle owner finds themselves in that type of situation.
The best advice available is to follow the advice of Strong Law car accident attorneys when going through free legal consultations.
Reasons Not to Drive a Vehicle After an Accident
There are two sides to parking the vehicle directly after an accident. The first is for legal reasons, and the second is for safety reasons. Let’s look at the legal reasons first.
After an accident occurs, the legal team will begin an investigation after the police report and all involved are tended to. Pictures are taken of the vehicle after the accident for records of damages obtained in the wreck. Written records are recorded by the police report through diagrams drawn on the pages of where the damages are located on the vehicle. The pictures obtained at the scene of the accident and the police report will match.
Insurance companies will also take their own pictures. Some will be collected through the accident scene, while others may get collected at an impound yard or another undisclosed location where the vehicle is parked. The pictures should only show what happened to the vehicle in the accident.
In some cases, pictures cannot be obtained until a few days after the accident. If the vehicle is drivable, it should stay parked until investigators can get the whole concept of the accident and the extent of the damages.
If the vehicle moves and continues to be driven, there could be another accident that may occur. This would be devastating to the current case and may void the entire claim. If the claims continued after a second wreck, it could turn the case into insurance fraud, which would become illegal.
After an accident, a professional mechanic or paint and body inspector may take a look at the vehicle. It may appear to be operable, but it may not be deemed safe if the frame is damaged or another mechanical part may malfunction while in operation.
It will take someone with the knowledge and understanding making this decision, and it could cause the vehicle to go into the status of a total loss. When this happens, the insurance company is responsible for paying the damages and the full value of the vehicle and taking it off the road completely.
Most of the time, if the frame is not damaged, the vehicle will be safe to drive. Other parts may get damaged, like the fenders, doors, tires, or other areas of the vehicle, which may still allow the vehicle to pass inspection. But it may not always be safe to drive. The brakes may have been hit in the impact, signal lights, brake lights, or headlights may have been destroyed. All of these allow the vehicle to operate but can cause another accident down the road if they are not working correctly.
Reasons To Drive a Vehicle After an Accident
There is probably no other piece of machinery that we all own that we need more than our vehicles. We use them to go to work, school, bring the kids where they need to go, grocery shopping, and other reasons for recreation. Getting into an accident can drastically change all of these routines we go through in life. Everyone understands the vehicle is needed; however, there are ways to keep the person hit in an accident still rolling.
The first step would be to discuss all of this information with the attorney. The free legal consultation can help guide the client as to their options if they can drive after the accident. Sometimes the insurance companies will have a rental option while the victim’s vehicle is getting repaired. Other times, a few days or weeks may be all that is needed for repairs. Getting the vehicle repaired or getting a rental will not settle the case. It only gives the option for the victim to continue to live their life normally after the accident.
There are situations where the lawyer can work up a deal with the insurance companies to get their client rolling again without settlements. Still, it takes an attorney to do this because the insurance companies will try to cheat the victim out of whatever they can.
What Can a Lawyer Do?
All car accident lawsuits and claims are personal injury cases. What kind depends on the nature of the accident. Most of the time, it is negligence. The first thing that should always be taken care of after an accident is the person or persons involved. Then the vehicles should be secondary.
A person’s health is more important, and the medical and hospital bills are the first things the lawyer will look into getting for their client. After this, they will look into the damages of the vehicles and any personal belongings that may have been damaged in the accident.
If the vehicle owner who is the victim can still operate a vehicle, the lawyer will look into different options, so their client can remain mobile. The investigative team of the attorney will give all the answers, and the lawyer will determine the best options for the client.
The client must discuss matters with the attorney and their attorney only. They should never speak with the insurance company or the other party under any circumstances. The whole point of getting an attorney is to keep you safe after the accident so you can get back to your life as soon as possible.