Should I Say "Sorry" After a Car Crash?
Whether you accidently bump into somebody while walking on a busy street or inadvertently knock over your drink at the dinner table, anything that results in inconvenience to another person may cause us to apologize for our actions.
However, in the wake of a car accident, the word “sorry” should not be part of your vocabulary.
Apologizing Is Often Interpreted as an Admission of Fault or Guilt
Any form of apology after a car crash can potentially be construed by insurance providers as an indication that you are admitting responsibility for the collision – thereby giving them a reason to deny your coverage and hold you financially responsible for the correlating damages. Although it may appear rude, it is important that you resist the urge to apologize at the scene of an accident, even if you believe that you were at fault for the collision.
Since not all of the facts are gathered immediately after a crash, prematurely claiming responsibility will only harm your ability to pursue a claim. Being mindful of what you say can oftentimes be the difference between obtaining a fair settlement and a lengthy legal dispute.
The following statements can harm your car accident claim:
- “I’m sorry”
- “I wasn’t paying attention”
- “I did not see you”
In addition, you should not say “I’m okay” or “I’m fine” if you are asked how you feel after a crash. These comments can be just as damaging, as some injuries suffered in car accidents often have delayed symptoms and side effects, which do not surface until hours, days, or even weeks later. Claiming to be alright following a collision can result in difficulties obtaining insurance coverage for medical expenses.