7 Things You Should Never Say After a Wisconsin Collision

Posted on behalf of Jeff Pitman on May 29, 2024 in Car Accidents

stock image of police questioning an driver at nightInjured in a collision caused by the negligence of another driver? If so, it is important to begin protecting your potential claim from the moment the crash occurs. While you must give responding officers an honest account of what happened, there are seven things you should never say after a Wisconsin collision.

Below, PKSD talks about the seven common phrases people say after a crash that do the most damage to their claims. We also discuss some of the first things you should do to protect your legal interests.

Not sure if you have a claim? Worried you might be partially to blame? We recommend calling our experienced car crash attorneys in Milwaukee to discuss your situation and potential legal options. Your initial case review is confidential and completely free.

Request your FREE case review today. Call 414-333-3333

What 7 Phrases Should You Never Say After a Wisconsin Crash?

Right after a crash, most people are in shock, which is why it is easy to say the wrong thing. So, what phrases could end up hurting your claim?

  1. I’m Sorry: It is natural to want to say this after being in an accident. Maybe you mean, “I feel bad this happened,” or “I feel bad you might have gotten injured.” Since car crashes often turn into a legal claim, what your intention is here does not matter. Anyone hearing those words, including the other driver, would likely interpret that phrase as both an apology and admission for the crash.
  2. That Was My Fault/My Bad: This is another phrase people often say after a traffic accident. Someone might say this to try to comfort the other driver or calm them down if they are angry. However, it is another saying that sounds like an admission of fault.
  3. I’m Alright/I’m Okay/I’m Fine: The interpretation of this statement is that you are not injured. Some people may even use the words, “I’m not hurt” when speaking to the other driver or the responding officer. This is a bad idea, because you cannot know if you are injured so soon after a crash.
  4. I Didn’t See You: Whether you were making a turn or backing out of a parking spot, this phrase makes it sound like you did not properly check for traffic before making your move.
  5. I Think That/I Believe: The police officer, insurance company and many others will ask for your statement about the accident. Phrase the words, “I think that” however you like; it is just something you should never say after a crash. While you need to give the police your statement, stick to the facts. Do not make statements about things you do not know.
  6. I Accept/I Won’t Call Police: Sometimes, the other driver may make you a cash offer. Whatever reason they give for doing this, we strongly encourage you not to accept it. You do not yet know the extent of the damage to your vehicle. More importantly, you do not know yet if you are injured. Some injuries are invisible to the human eye, such as internal organ damage. Any medical treatment you need could rack up some costly medical bills.
  7. I Don’t Need a Lawyer/Not Hiring a Lawyer: Whether you do or do not end up contacting a lawyer, we do not recommend saying that to anyone. Saying that to the insurance company guarantees you will not get compensated for the full value of your claim. They know you likely do not know all your rights or how to accurately determine the value of your claim.

How Using These Phrases Could Hurt Your Claim

Saying any of these phrases after a crash can have serious consequences, including:

Legal Consequences

Admitting fault, apologizing or saying you did not see the other driver before the crash are all phrases that can be used against you in court. The potential outcome is that you could be unfairly assessed with liability for the accident.

Insurance Issues

The liable insurance company will try to use statements you made against you. For instance, if you said you were not injured but later found out you sustained injuries. That is a situation where the insurance company would try to discredit you and say you changed your story to try to get compensation. An attorney can heavily dispute these and other arguments from the liable insurer, but it unnecessarily complicates the claims process.

Incomplete Information

You do not have all the facts right after the crash. For example:

  • Witnesses who saw the crash may testify the other driver was fully at fault
  • A medical examination may show you sustained internal injuries and need treatment
  • You may find out your car cannot be fixed and has to be totaled

Reduced Compensation

Being assessed with fault, even partially, can make you responsible and limit any compensation you may receive for your damages. This includes your medical bills, lost wages if you missed work, property damages and more.

Fair Investigation

Admitting fault could prematurely waive your right to a thorough investigation that might reveal shared or differing levels of responsibility.

How Can I Protect My Claim After a Crash?

There are definitely things you can do from minutes after the crash and throughout the legal process that can help to protect your claim.

Here are a few key points to remember:

  • Call 9-1-1 to get police and medical help to the scene: This step provides documentation that can later help to support your claim.
  • Cooperate with first responders: Give an honest account, but do not add unnecessary details. When asked if you are injured, say you do not know but plan to get a medical exam right away.
  • Exchange information: Get the other driver’s contact details. Be sure to also get the contact details of any witnesses.
  • Report the accident to your insurance company: Again, when relaying the incident, do not apologize, admit fault or say you were not hurt. Give the simple facts, or better yet, let them know they can contact your attorney to get the details later.
  • Contact an attorney: An experienced injury lawyer knows how to protect your claim. He or she can guide you throughout the legal process and help build a solid case on your behalf.

In short, let the investigation determine fault and hire an attorney to protect your legal and financial interests.

Why Contact PKSD for Legal Help After a Milwaukee Crash

PKSD has been a trusted attorney for injured victims in Milwaukee for decades. We advocate for the injured every day, and we have a strong history of getting results for our clients.

Not sure if you have a car crash case? We can determine whether you may have a case at no cost to you. Simply request a free case review. This meeting can be done by phone or through secure video conferencing. If you have a case and we represent you, there are no upfront costs to pay. We only get paid if you do.

Experienced Attorneys. Proven Results. 414-333-3333

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