Motor vehicle accidents can shake you up. But no matter their severity, you can receive recourse through a claim or settlement. Yet you may not know how to proceed – or what you’re entitled to.

So long as the other motorists involved cooperate, the process can be easy. Regardless, these tips can help lessen the chaos and frustration in the accident’s aftermath.

Document the accident

If you’re not seriously injured, make sure you document the crash after moving to a safe area. Thanks to smartphones, it’s easier than ever to take accurate pictures of the scene and your vehicle’s damage. And even if the collision is a minor fender bender, you will still want to file an accident report. By Ohio law, you don’t have to file one when there are no injuries, or if the damage totals less than $400. Yet doing so can help you cover your bases as a precautionary measure.

Exchange insurance information

Make sure you exchange insurance information with the other drivers involved. No matter who is at fault, these details are crucial when making a claim, for they can hold the liable motorist accountable. But the driver at fault may refuse to provide their insurance information. Calling the police is imperative in this case, if you haven’t already.

Pursue your claim

You can choose to pursue a claim through your own insurance company. Otherwise, the driver at fault’s insurance will likely compensate most of your vehicle’s repair costs. Their insurance will likely compensate your medical expenses, too. Yet your claims could face denial. Or you might feel your settlement is insufficient. In these instances, you can draft a written complaint to the Ohio Department of Insurance. In rare cases, the driver found at fault could try holding you responsible for damages. If so, you have the option of pursuing a civil suit.

Taking precautions after a motor vehicle accident can protect you when the stakes are low. Doing so is even more crucial if they heighten. Working with a personal injury attorney can help you achieve the proper recourse for your situation.