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For all the car accidents smartphones cause each year, the devices are actually incredibly useful ­after a crash. Virtually every step you should take after being hit by a negligent driver can be fulfilled or greatly assisted by a smartphone and one of its many applications. Despite its universal usefulness, you would be surprised how many people admit to not even pick up their phones following a crash.

Try to keep these smartphone uses and applications in mind after being in a car accident to improve your claim later on:

  1. Emergency assistance: If anyone is hurt or if the damage to any vehicle is extensive, emergency responders need to be notified and summoned by calling 911. If no one requires immediate medical attention, it is easy for people to skip the phone call and thus forget their phone altogether.
  2. Photographs: What better way to document the scene than to take pictures? Break out the smartphone and start taking photographs from all angles. You need pictures of your car, other cars involved, injuries, and the general environment, including weather conditions.
  3. Notepad: How many times have you heard someone say, “I don’t have a pen or paper”? This used to be a real trouble on a day-to-day basis but it really shouldn’t be anymore, now that just about everyone has a smartphone. No way to write down insurance and identifying information? Incorrect! Just use a notepad application to jot it all down there.
  4. Contact information: Apologizing and taking the blame for an accident is the number one mistake you must avoid after being in an auto accident. Even people who know they aren’t liable may inadvertently accept some accountability by talking too much. Don’t worry about filling the silence with conversation; just pass along your cell number and tell them you will be in contact, later. As in after you talk to your attorney.