Because of the severity of the injuries, the contributing factors, and the physics involved in motorcycle accidents, they are among the most complicated cases for people to litigate. It is important for you to take steps to strengthen and preserve your claim if you have been injured in a motorcycle accident. By following these motorcycle accident claim tips, you may protect your rights and help your personal injury lawyer build a strong case that demonstrates the liability of the motorist who caused your accident.
Motorcycle Accident Claim Tips
Many people are biased against motorcyclists, believing that they are risk-takers and are thus more likely to cause their own accidents. Because of this, it is important that you employ these motorcycle accident claim tips to strengthen your case if you are involved in an accident. Doing so may make it likelier that the insurance company will settle your claim for a reasonable amount.
Get Medical Treatment
While some motorcyclists are left unconscious or gravely injured following their accidents, others’ injuries are not so apparent. For example, some motorcyclists believe their injuries are minor or that they have not been injured at all. Remember that some serious types of injuries may not show symptoms for hours or days after an accident. So before you follow any of our other motorcycle accident claim tips, it is important for you to seek immediate medical care and to remain in the hospital for as long as your doctor recommends. You should also follow your doctor’s follow-up recommendations, which may include rehabilitation and taking time off from work.
Report Your Accident to the Police
It is important for you to report your motorcycle accident to the police regardless of whether you think it is minor. Calling the police will ensure that the accident is documented, and the police also might issue citations to the other motorist. Police reports contain important identifying information that you will need if you are forced to file a lawsuit, including the name and contact information of the other motorist, his or her insurance company information, and the make and model of the other vehicle.
If you are able to do so, take pictures of the accident scene with your camera or smartphone. Your pictures should include the other vehicle, your motorcycle, and the damage to each. You should also take photographs of your surroundings, such as traffic control devices, skidmarks on the pavement, and any road conditions that might have contributed to your accident.
Speak to Witnesses
If there are witnesses who saw your accident, try to talk to them. Ask them for their names and contact information, and encourage them to wait and talk to the police when they arrive. This can help your attorney locate witnesses later who might be helpful to your claim.
Try to Avoid Talking to the Insurance Company or Signing Documents
It is very common for insurance companies to contact injured victims soon after the companies learn about the accidents. They may ask you to give recorded statements and to sign medical authorizations. If you are contacted, you should simply tell the company that you want to talk to an attorney before you will give a statement. You should also not sign a medical authorization form. Insurance companies use these to comb through victims’ entire medical histories in an effort to blame their injuries on earlier incidents.
Do Not Repair Your Motorcycle Right Away
While it is understandable that you might want to repair the damage to your motorcycle, you should not do so immediately. Your motorcycle is a vital piece of evidence that can be used to help you prove the liability of the other motorist. The motorcycle can also be used to demonstrate exactly how severe the accident was. Your personal injury lawyer may also retain an accident reconstruction expert who may use your motorcycle to opine about the severity and cause of your accident at trial.
Document All of Your Expenses
It is a good idea for you to document all of the costs that you incur as a result of your motorcycle accident. This should include your medical expenses, prescription costs, rehabilitation costs, and income losses. You should provide this information to your lawyer for his or her use in your case.
Stay Away from Social Media
While it may seem difficult to do so, it is important that you are very careful with social media. Some people harm their claims by posting photographs of their motorcycles and talking about their accidents on Facebook, Twitter, or elsewhere. Insurance companies commonly review social media posts and photos to try to uncover evidence of malingering. This can include pictures of you taking a vacation or engaging in physical activities after the accident, which the insurance company might claim demonstrate that you were not as injured as you have claimed.
Consult with an Experienced Motorcycle Accident Lawyer
Even if you follow all of the motorcycle accident claim tips listed above, it is crucial that you seek help from an experienced attorney when you have been injured. An attorney will be familiar with the types of defense strategies that insurance companies commonly use and build your case in such a way that you can prevail.
Contact the Law Offices of Bryan Musgrave, and schedule a free initial consultation to explore your options. We can help you determine the best course of action so that you can obtain the maximum compensation you deserve and the best outcome for your claim.