Do you know what to do after you’ve been in a motorcycle accident?
With over 6 million road traffic accidents in the US each year, it’s more common than you might think. But if you’ve never been in one before, you might not know what you need to do after it happens.
Don’t worry, we’re here to help! Read on for these seven things you need to do after a motorcycle accident.
1. Get Medical Help
You should always get the right treatment you need after a motorcycle accident. Motorcycle accidents are different in that it’s very rare for there to be no damage or injury.
It’s important you get better, and your best chance is to seek out proper medical treatment. You may need ongoing treatment too, so you can get back on your feet.
Getting proper medical attention will also add weight to any claim you have. It’s a notorious tactic where insurers use gaps or delays in medical treatment to accuse you of lying. They’ll try to use it as evidence to discredit you and your injuries.
So, seek immediate medical attention. And if you need to follow up with regular treatments after, then do so. It’ll give you the proof you need that your injuries are as serious as you said they are.
2. Gather Contact Information
If you’re able to, you should get all the information from other drivers at the scene while you wait for 911. This should include:
- full name
- phone number & email
- insurance company
- license plate numbers
- witness statements
In some instances (especially if they are at fault) drivers will try to flee the scene or getaway as fast as they can. By getting this information while you wait for authorities, it can help protect you.
You shouldn’t have to suffer for the negligence of another driver leaving the scene. But, you should never talk about the facts of the accident, or admit fault. You shouldn’t even apologize as, in court, the opposition can claim this is admitting fault. This could devalue any claim you’re entitled to.
3. Get Photographs
Photographic evidence of the scene right after it happens is highly-reliable. It’s more accurate than handwritten or drawn diagrams and witness statements.
How the scene looks after the crash will give vital clues on the cause. It can help police, insurers and your attorneys work out who was at fault. And build you a strong case.
The police will do their own investigation, with their own photos. But while you’re waiting, get some of your own. It’ll help you get a headstart when you go to a lawyer to help you with your case.
Plus, it’s not uncommon for police officers to make mistakes. The extra information can’t hurt. So, use your smartphone to record a video and walk around the scene (but don’t touch or move anything). Then take still shots of everything, from as many angles as you can.
Focus on getting pictures of things you think will help your case. Get in any hazards or poor road conditions. Skid marks, debris scattered, resting vehicle position too. Photo the current weather conditions and include any visible injuries to yourself.
4. Get a Copy of the Police Report
Soon after your motorcycle accident, you should get a copy of the police report. It can take up to 10 days for this to be ready though, bear in mind.
To order a copy, you can go through your State’s Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles. Usually, you’ll need to pay for the report, as well as a convenience fee, but this will differ from state to state.
When you buy it, it’ll usually come in an online format that you can download. Or, if you want to get a hard copy, then you should head down to your nearest Highway Patrol Troop Station.
5. Put In Your Insurance Claim
You need to notify your insurance company of an accident as soon as it happens. In their requirements, most insurers will state that you must notify them of any crashes. Even if you didn’t cause them.
If you don’t, they might choose not to keep you on when you need to renew your insurance. Or they may even cancel it.
So, you should start to file a claim with your motorcycle insurance provider. But, until you have a lawyer, don’t tell them any details of the crash or admit fault. You should only let them know that a crash happened.
Once you’ve notified them, they’ll then contact the other parties’ insurers. If you aren’t carrying any insurance, then you need to contact the other parties’ insurers.
Remember, the insurance company isn’t your friend. This is even more true if you’re not the policyholder, so don’t expect them to have your back. Report the accident, but that’s it. Don’t give any more information than that.
They will send out an adjuster/investigator to look into the cause and do an investigation. If you say too much, it might put the onus on you and it could bring down the value of your claim entitlement.
6. Hire a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer
With motorcycle accidents, it’s best to get a lawyer. There are several factors that can end up causing a motorcycle accident, including:
- other drivers in larger vehicles
- motorcycle defects
- poor road maintenance and condition
A lawyer who has experience in motorcycle accidents will conduct an investigation. They’ll look into what caused the crash and who was liable. And they’re well versed in what to look for to strengthen your case.
Having a lawyer on your side can also help when it comes to negotiating and talking to insurers. As we said, they’re not your friend and will look to pay out as little as possible.
It can be intimidating for someone who doesn’t know how to handle them. But an experienced lawyer won’t be a pushover and can fight to get you the compensation you deserve. And you can focus on healing and recovering.
7. Keep Away From Social Media
Insurance investigators will try to find any way they might reduce your claim. Social media posts can go against you if the investigators read them wrong.
They might use pictures you’ve posted to downplay your injuries. Or they might try to claim you’re making a better, faster recovery than you’ve claimed.
Investigators might even dig into your history. They’re looking to find any evidence of previous accidents or injuries. This might allow them to try and claim you must have been at fault as it’s happened before.
You don’t need to delete your social media but review your privacy settings. And never post anything about the accidents until you’ve settled the claim or it’s been to court.
What to Do After a Motorcycle Accident Made Easy
So, there you have it! Now you know these seven things to do after a motorcycle accident, you’ll know how to handle it if the worst happens.
Seek medical treatment for your injuries, and if you can, take pictures of the scene. Gather information from all involved parties and any witnesses. And most of all, remember you’re not alone. An experienced lawyer can help guide you and get you the compensation you deserve.
If you are looking for an experienced motorcycle accident lawyer for your case, then contact us today at RHINO Lawyers.
CONTACT A TAMPA AUTO ACCIDENT ATTORNEY
In short, after a motorcycle accident, you may not know your rights. Above all, don’t struggle through the process alone. Actually, our personal injury team is here to help you with any legal needs you might have regarding your accident.
Lastly, let RHINO Lawyers answer your questions and review the facts of your case with a Free Consultation. So, get started by completing the “Free Instant Case Evaluation” or by calling us any time, day or night, at 844.329.3491.