What to Do if You Get in a Car Wreck out of State on Vacation

English Lucas Priest and Owsley, LLP

By Kyle Roby, Partner

It’s the first week of October and for most schools in Kentucky that means fall break is here, and many of us plan a vacation that’s at least one hundred (100) miles from home. For those of us who have traveled south for fall break, we have all been rerouted by Waze or Google Maps when there is a wreck on the interstate. However, how many of us would know what to do if we were the ones involved in the wreck so far from home? Whether you go road-tripping in your own car, or fly to your destination and rent a vehicle, it’s important to know what to do if you get in a wreck on vacation.

What to Do if You Have a Car Wreck While on Vacation

Read these tips for dealing with a car accident, especially when on vacation in an unfamiliar territory:

  1. Follow the Usual Procedure. Even if you’re far from home, the procedure for car accidents is typically the same – especially in the United States: call the police, file a report, and seek medical attention immediately. Move your car out of the roadway to prevent further chaos. Exchange contact and insurance information with the other driver and take photographs of everything – license plates, damage, injuries, and the scene of the accident. Get the names and phone numbers of other drivers who may have witnessed the accident. If driving a rented car, you’ll also need to contact the rental company and follow any additional instructions.

Tip: If you have rented a car, before your trip, make sure your personal auto insurance provides for coverage on the rented vehicle. If it does not, it is recommended you purchase additional insurance that will protect you and your family in the event of an accident.

  1. Report the Accident to Your Insurance Company. Report the wreck to your insurance company immediately. Taking immediate action will help you get in a rental car quickly and get a claim number for Personal Injury Protection benefits. This claim number will help with medical bills from out-of-network medical providers.

Tip: Before you leave for you vacation, make sure you have adequate automobile insurance coverage such as rental car coverage and comprehensive property damage coverage.

Document Out-of-Pocket Expenses. Keep all receipts for all out-of-pocket expenses. Inevitably, you will have additional expenses from hotels, food, or other unexpected costs from the wreck.

When to Seek Legal Help

Following an accident, it is important to seek legal advice as soon as possible. If your own insurance or another party’s insurance company approaches you and asks you to sign paperwork, do not sign anything without first consulting with an attorney. You want to ensure that all of your expenses are covered, and an experienced attorney can help you receive all of the compensation you deserve.

Contact me, attorney Kyle Roby, at (270) 781-6500 or to see if I can help you.


J. Kyle Roby

J. Kyle Roby is a partner at English, Lucas, Priest & Owsley, LLP practicing primarily in personal injury law, medical malpractice, and civil litigation. For more than a decade, Kyle Roby has been a fierce advocate for his clients. From car accidents to truck wrecks to defending doctors and nurses, he has earned the trust of hundreds of clients.