What to Do After a Motorcycle Accident?

Imagine you’re out on your motorcycle and get into a crash. You may be terrified and unsure of what to do next. After assessing the situation and calling for emergency assistance, you start to feel pain, so you receive medical treatment. Then, you begin to process what just happened, and you need legal counsel to help protect your legal rights and secure financial compensation.

If you or a loved one has suffered an injury in a motorcycle accident, contact an experienced attorney in your area. Do not delay. Get a motorcycle accident attorney and start building your legal team immediately.

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Steps to Take After a Motorcycle Accident

Get Medical Help

Seek medical help immediately after an accident. Many accident victims suffer from injuries after a crash. You should speak to a medical professional to protect your physical condition.

Some injuries do not present themselves until after a physical examination. For example, you may be suffering from a concussion because of a crash. An untreated head injury can cause long-term damage.

Treating your physical injuries immediately after the accident can also help your lawsuit. Insurance companies often claim that the accident did not cause the injuries an accident victim claims if they delay treatment. They may even attempt to use the time between the crash and seeking treatment as proof that something other than the crash caused your injuries.

Avoid Speaking to the Insurance Company

Avoid speaking to the opposing insurance company after an accident. The other motorist’s insurance company is not on your side, no matter how accommodating they seem. Insurance companies use some common tactics to reduce the amount of money they pay out. Many insurers try to avoid making payments at all.

Some of the common tactics insurance adjusters use to avoid making payments include:

  • Blame-shifting to the victim
  • Downplaying your injuries
  • Disarming you with polite encounters
  • Misrepresenting insurance benefits and policy limits
  • Refusing to pay for medical care
  • Disputing the need for specific medical treatments and procedures
  • Offering a trivial initial settlement quickly after the accident occurs

An insurance company may ask you to give a recorded or written statement. You should avoid giving a statement before speaking to an attorney. Insurance companies bet on the idea that you are inexperienced with accident cases and will fall for some of their tricks. Do not find yourself the victim of an insurance company.

Get Legal Advice

If you have been in a motorcycle accident, you need legal advice to protect your rights and ability to recover financial compensation. You should speak to an attorney as soon as possible after a traffic accident.

An experienced accident attorney can help you in various ways throughout your case. Each of these ways can help you access the full compensation available after a crash. Some of the ways retaining legal counsel can help improve the outcome of your case include:

Negotiating With the Insurance Company

Settlement negotiation is a complex stage of a motorcycle accident lawsuit. Importantly, most accident claims settle, but it’s critical to make sure that you obtain the compensation you deserve. Once you settle, it’s nearly impossible to go back and get additional compensation for the same accident.

Accident attorneys can help you get the most out of settlement negotiation. Many unrepresented accident victims do not realize the extent of their losses and what money they may be entitled to. Having an experienced negotiator can help you avoid leaving money on the table.

Help You Prepare for Trial

Motorcycle accident trials tend to be long and complicated. If you do not have an attorney working with you, an insurance company and its defense lawyers may try everything to exhaust you during a trial. You need a legal team that can match their resources and goes blow for blow as they seek justice on your behalf.

Speak to Debt Collectors for You

After an accident, healthcare providers may start calling you and demanding payment for the services you received. The calls and other correspondence can cause unnecessary stress and prolong your recovery. Your legal team can field those calls for you so you can focus on your physical recovery.

Help You Identify Your Damages and Manage Your Expectations

Many accident victims do not know what they may recover after an accident. An accident attorney can help identify each loss you have suffered and build a case to get you the money you need to recover.

Avoid Social Media

After an accident happens, avoid posting to social media. Insurance companies will pounce on every sign they see that will allow them to shift the blame away from the insured. Today, people tend to use their social media like a diary. It is easy to make a mistake and post a comment that the other side can use against you. For example, an insurance company can even use a post of you out to dinner with friends after your accident to argue that your injuries are not as serious as you are claiming.

How Common Are Motorcycle Accidents?

Unfortunately, many motorcycle accidents happen across the country each year, and they are often deadly. According to the United States Department of Transportation, thousands of motorcyclists die yearly.

The department reported the following statistics:

  • 5,579 motorcyclists died in traffic crashes across the country in a recent year
  • The number of motorcyclist deaths increased by 11 percent from the previous year
  • Of all motor vehicle deaths that happened, 14 percent involved motorcyclists
  • 60 percent of motorcyclists that were fatally injured were wearing a helmet at the time of the accident
  • 27 percent of motorcycle accidents involved a motorist with a blood alcohol concentration level of 0.08 percent or higher
  • Of all motorcyclist accidents, 41 percent were single-vehicle crashes
  • Many motorcycle drivers were killed at night (between 9 p.m. and 6 a.m.)

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration also reports that:

  • 61 percent of motorcycle accident deaths happen in cities
  • 39 percent of accidents happened in rural areas
  • Most accidents (66 percent) happened outside of intersections
  • 34 percent of motorcycle accidents happened at intersections
  • In accidents involving at least two vehicles, motorcyclists were hit head-on in 76 percent of deadly crashes, and rear-ended in seven percent of cases.

Common Causes of Motorcycle Accidents

Drivers and motorcyclists alike must follow traffic laws. When motorists fail to follow traffic laws, accidents can happen. If you or a loved one has suffered an injury in a motorcycle accident, you should contact an experienced accident attorney to protect your legal rights and access to compensation. Some common causes of car accidents include:

Recklessness

A driver is reckless when they drive with disregard for the safety of others on the road. Motorcyclists are at a greater risk of suffering from severe injuries if they get into an accident with a reckless driver because their vehicles do not have the same protective vehicle body as passenger vehicles like cars and trucks.

Carelessness

Careless driving happens when a driver makes avoidable mistakes. Examples of careless driving include failure to check blind spots, failing to yield, blowing through stop signs, and not looking before changing lanes.

Distracted Driving

A driver taking their attention off driving can lead to a distracted driving accident. Anything can cause a distracted driving accident, including texting, eating, changing music, checking the navigation, talking to passengers, etc. An accident can happen in seconds, so drivers should always keep their attention on the road.

Impaired Driving

Driving under the influence of drugs and alcohol can cause serious accidents. Operating a vehicle while intoxicated is illegal. No driver should get behind the wheel after consuming illegal drugs or too much alcohol.

Fatigued Driving

You may not think of it as a common cause of traffic accidents, but driving without adequate rest can lead to an accident. Fatigued drivers have reduced reaction times and may experience microsleep when they nod off for even a second. Microsleep may cause an accident.

Poorly Maintained Roads

The city or state must properly maintain the roads. If the roads are littered with cracks and potholes or have other problems, the city or state may be liable for causing the accident. Suing a government entity is challenging. You will need an attorney to help you recover the losses you may be entitled to from a government defendant.

Defective Parts

Poorly manufactured vehicles with faulty parts can cause accidents. An accident caused by defective parts can bring an automobile manufacturer into a lawsuit. Manufacturers should always put safe products into the marketplace; failure to do so can open manufacturers up to legal liability.

Speeding

Speeding is one of the most common causes of traffic accidents. If a driver speeds, they may be unable to control their vehicle or brake in enough time to avoid an accident.

Disobeying Traffic Laws

Every driver must follow traffic laws and obey all traffic signs. For example, if a driver fails to yield the right-of-way, they may cause an accident. Another example is if a driver speeds up to make a yellow light, they risk colliding with another vehicle and causing severe injuries.

How Do I Prove My Motorcycle Accident Case?

Motorcycle accident claims are negligence actions. A negligence action has four elements, and victims must prove each to win their cases. The elements of a negligence action are duty, breach, causation, and damages.

Duty

Every motorist must drive with reasonable care. Reasonable care means that everyone on the road must work to avoid accidents and injuries. Drivers must follow traffic rules, drive while sober, avoid driving while tired or distracted, and maintain their vehicles.

Breach

Breach of duty happens when a motorist fails to act reasonably. A breach can happen if a driver runs a red light, runs a stop sign, speeds, or does anything else that will cause an accident. When a breach happens, the results can be severe. Drivers who breach their duty should pay for the damages they cause to others.

Causation

This may present the greatest challenge in a negligence case. Insurance companies and defense attorneys work overtime to prove that another person or entity is at fault for causing the accident. An accident attorney will help you defend yourself against opposing parties and protect your rights.

Damages

Each accident plaintiff must prove damages. Damages are any losses a motorcycle accident victim may have after a crash. Injuries can include medical bills, current and future lost income, lost earning capacity, pain, and suffering, mental anguish, emotional trauma, etc.

Each of these elements must be proven to a jury for a motorcycle accident plaintiff to recover compensation. An attorney can help you build a case and persuasively present evidence that may help you win your case and recover the financial and other losses you have sustained because of the accident.

What if I Cannot Afford an Attorney?

Some motorcyclists worry they cannot afford legal representation if they get into an accident. Because they believe they cannot afford an attorney, they feel they will never recover the losses they sustained after an accident.

A contingency fee allows a client to retain legal representation without spending any money upfront. Generally, an attorney will take an agreed-upon percentage of the final settlement or award. There is usually no recovery by the attorney if there is no settlement. You should speak to your attorney about the fee arrangements they offer.

Call a Motorcycle Accident Attorney Today

Tatiana Boohoff, Lawyer for Motorcycle Accident cases near Tampa area.
Tatiana Boohoff, Motorcycle Accident Attorney in Tampa

If you have suffered injuries in a motorcycle accident, you should reach out to a lawyer immediately. You deserve to recover for the losses you sustained after an accident, and the insurance company is definitely not on your side.

There is no reason for you to go through the aftermath of a motorcycle crash alone. Contact a personal injury lawyer in Tampa and start building your case today.

Request A Free Consultation Today!


Boohoff Law P.A. – Tampa Office

829 W Dr Martin Luther King Jr Blvd,
Tampa, FL 33603
Phone: (813) 725-5606

April 26, 2023
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