After a car crash, it is important to collect certain information so that you can use it later in any insurance claims or lawsuits you file. However, knowing what information to exchange and gather can be tricky.
After a crash, always get the name, contact info, and vehicle registration info for any drivers involved in the crash. You are required to exchange this info, so you need to give your name, contact info, and registration info as well. Also collect the names and contact info of anyone else involved in the crash – such as passengers – and any witnesses who saw the crash. Lastly, consider getting insurance info, taking pictures, and recording other information about the time, location, weather, lighting, and anything else you think might help.
After being involved in a crash, call our New Jersey car accident lawyers for help with your injury claim. Call Legal Care New Jersey for a free case review at (732) 838-9769.
Required Information to Exchange with Other Drivers After a New Jersey Car Crash
Under NJ law, there are certain duties you have after a car accident. Under N.J.S.A. § 39:4-129, you have to stop and take steps after any accident involving injury, death, or damage to a vehicle or other property. When you stop, subsection c of this statute says that you must do the following:
- Give your name
- Give your address
- Show your driver’s license
- Show your registration certificate
- Render aid to injured people (usually by calling 911)
This required info must be given to anyone who was injured or anyone whose property was damaged. That would include passengers injured in a crash – not just the driver – and it would include any property owners who are not at the scene of the crash – e.g., the owner of an unattended parked car. There are special rules about what you need to do for an unattended property that allows you to go tell the nearest police department about the accident instead.
If the other people involved in the crash are incapacitated, you don’t need to give them this information, but you still need to report the accident to the police and give them information. The same is true if you are incapacitated: the other drivers will need to tell the police their info, so you know who to hold responsible.
Talk to a Jersey City car accident attorney about whether any other requirements apply as to the information that needs to be exchanged or reports that need to be filed after a car accident.
Other Information to Collect After a Car Crash in NJ
Other information might not be required under the law, but you should still exchange certain pieces of information with other people at the scene and collect other evidence and information to build a strong case.
You should exchange names and contact info with anyone else who witnessed the accident or might have been involved, even if they suffered no property damage or injuries. Uninjured passengers, drivers in other cars, and even people standing on the side of the road might have important information about what happened. If you get their names and contact info, your Newark car accident lawyers can contact them later for depositions or testimony about the accident.
The same is true for any police who respond to the accident. You should get their names and contact info so that you can later call them to testify in your accident case about what happened in the aftermath. Especially in cases where the other driver was drunk or was arrested or ticketed for another traffic offense or crime, the police officers could have vital information that will help you prove fault in your case.
Additionally, all of the following information and evidence is important to collect:
Although insurance information is not something you need to exchange under the rules of N.J.S.A. § 39-4-129, it is still important to exchange this information with the other driver. Everyone in New Jersey is required to carry no-fault insurance, but many accidents are severe enough that you will end up filing an insurance claim against the other driver. Especially if they are an out-of-state driver, they might have robust liability insurance you can file a claim against – and you need to know their insurance information to be able to do that.
It is vital to know what vehicles are involved in the crash. You are required to exchange vehicle registration information, but at a more basic level, you should know what cars were involved in the accident. That means writing down the basic details like the make, model, color, and license place numbers of all vehicles involved in the accident.
Photos and Video
Any photos you can take of the crash scene will help reconstruct what happened. It can also be used to show the judge and jury the vehicle damage, road conditions, weather conditions, lighting conditions, nearby traffic signals/signs, and other important info. You can also photograph your injuries to help prove when they happened.
Video of the accident itself is incredibly helpful evidence. If someone might have taken a video of the accident on their phone, get their contact info and a copy of the video. The same steps should be taken for anyone who might have had a dash cam on their car to capture the crash or any nearby houses or businesses that might have had security cameras that recorded the accident.
You should know exactly where the accident happened so that you sound like an expert later when you have to testify about the crash. Knowing what street, what intersection, what mile-marker, etc., will be important when reporting the accident to the police and when telling your story about what happened.
Lighting, Weather, and Road Conditions
Specific details about the scene of the accident can be important when discussing what happened and trying to file an insurance claim or injury lawsuit. Your Elizabeth car accident lawyers can help you better if you know what the lighting, weather, and road conditions were like at the scene. This means taking notes about nearby lighting, whether it was raining or snowing, and whether the road surface was intact and had clearly painted lines.
Call Our New Jersey Car Accident Attorneys Today
If you were hurt in a car crash in New Jersey, call Legal Care New Jersey for a free case review with our Paterson car accident attorneys. Our number is (732) 838-9769.