You know that it's wise to document a car accident after it happens. The other driver may lie, especially if he or she caused the accident and is worried about legal ramifications and being forced to pay for damages. Your documentation can help sort out the truth. Wondering what you should do? Here are a few key tips.

Take Pictures

A picture is worth a thousands words, especially after a car accident. Photos give you clear proof of how much damage was done, where each vehicle was located, and the like. In seconds, you can capture the whole scene. You may not have time to analyze it on the spot, but those pictures can be analyzed endlessly later on. Taking videos may also help, though pictures do tend to be clearer and may provide stronger evidence.

Use Your Phone

Taking pictures on your phone makes it easier to share them quickly. If you have an automatic backup system, it also gives you peace of mind in knowing that these crucial pictures aren't going to be lost. The insurance company may want you to email pictures as proof after the crash, which you can do from your phone.

Be sure you also understand what tools your insurance company uses. For example, some have apps you can download for free, allowing you to quickly submit photos and reports after the crash.

Get Physical Documentation

While smartphones are tremendously helpful, don't be overly reliant on them and forget about physical documentation. If possible, try to write down the other driver's contact information, including a name, email address, phone number and insurance information. Definitely write down the license plate number for that person's car.

Even here, though, smartphones can help. Quickly snapping a photo of the person's insurance card and license plate, for example, gives you solid proof and limits the chances of a transcription error.

Standing Up for Your Rights

If the case winds up in court, all of this documentation may prove invaluable. You don't have a second chance to get photos from the scene. Be sure you gather information as quickly as possible and understand all of your legal rights, especially if you've been injured in the accident.