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After a Car Accident, Protect Yourself from Identity Theft

By Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S. on August 20, 2012

In the first moments after a Washington car accident, you’re probably thinking about making sure everyone is safe and trading contact information with others involved in the accident – not about protecting yourself from identity theft. However, being wise about the information you trade with other drivers can protect you in more ways than one.

Washington Car Accident Insurance ClaimAfter a car accident, it’s important to trade your name and the name and phone number of your insurance company with the other driver. The state of Washington requires every driver to carry a proof of insurance card, and so, the only information you need to give are your full name and your insurance company’s contact information. Giving additional information, such as your address, phone number, driver’s license number, or Social Security number, is not only unnecessary but may also leave you open to identity theft. After a traffic accident, it is also advisable to write down the license plate number of the vehicle involved in your collision.

Surprisingly, most drivers aren’t aware that they don’t need to trade all their information after an accident. According to a study by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), 40 percent of people thought they had to give their driver’s license number to another party after a crash. Additionally, about 17 percent of respondents would allow another person to photograph their driver’s license as a quick way of exchanging information. These steps are not only unnecessary, but they may be risky.

If you’ve been injured in a car accident, you’re not alone. The experienced Washington car accident attorneys at Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S. can help you get the compensation you need to cover the various past, present, and future losses you experience because of a crash. For a free case evaluation, give us a call today at (888) 228-3860.

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