Over the years our firm has had many hundreds of car wreck cases against State Farm insurance. In almost every one of the cases that involved low property damage, State Farm made the claim that our client couldn’t be injured in such a minor impact.
But now we learn that on their Web site State Farm advises their own policy holders this way: “Even low-impact collisions can cause injuries, some not appearing until days after the accident.”
Wow — I promise that I have NEVER heard that statement from a State Farm adjuster, not in 41 years of handling auto accident cases. This is a true revelation! Here is the rest of the advice State Farm has for you if you are involved in a low impact collision:
The fender bender you were just in appears to be minor. No one looks injured and there is minimal damage to the vehicles. First breathe a sigh of relief – then take these precautions to help prevent your small accident from becoming a big problem.
Don’t drive away.
Do stay at the scene and move your vehicle to a safe place out of traffic even if there appears to be no damage. If the other car is parked and the owner isn’t around, leave a note with your name and contact information.
Don’t assume there aren’t injuries.
Do assess yourself and your passengers. Even low-impact collisions can cause injuries, some not appearing until days after the accident.
Don’t sign any documents and avoid accepting or offering cash for repairs. You may end up paying out-of-pocket to repair damage to your car that only appears minor, or you could pay the other driver more than necessary.
Do stay calm. Take notes and photos, and exchange information with the other driver, including your name, address, phone number, driver’s license number, license plate number, insurance company, and policy number.
Don’t assume an accident is too minor to be reported.
Do call the police or file a report on your own. This will help your insurance agent handle your claim. An accident report could also help protect you from issues that may arise later about the extent of damage to your vehicle or injuries to you and the other driver.
Don’t forget to notify your State Farm agent.
Do discuss your options for handling potential claims.