When you suffer an injury in a motorcycle accident, you have the legal right to financial compensation if you can prove that someone else was to blame for what happened. Many steps need to happen between the accident and when the settlement check goes into your account. There is no certainty that you will even receive compensation at all.
Your actions after your motorcycle accident matter. What you do can make a difference in whether you get a check and the size of it. You may wonder how you can do anything after you have suffered injuries in an accident.
The actions that you must take relate to your health. You never have to handle this lengthy legal process without an experienced motorcycle accident attorney. If you try, you will cost yourself money and end up in a difficult position.
Three Things to Focus on After a Motorcycle Accident
The most important things that you must do after a motorcycle accident are:
- Get all the medical help you need immediately and follow all the treatment recommendations.
- Hire a lawyer without delay, so they can protect your legal rights and begin the process of seeking financial compensation.
- Avoid making mistakes, such as speaking publicly about the accident or accepting a quick settlement offer, because they can cost you money.
Motorcycle accident injuries tend to be more severe because there is little to protect you from impact with either the car or the roadway. These accidents have a much higher fatality rate and risk of life-altering injuries. You must protect your rights even more after serious injuries.
Take Care of Your Health After a Motorcycle Accident Injury
Your most pressing concern after a motorcycle accident is your health. You must do everything possible to get the medical care you need to the fullest extent possible. You may never recover fully. You will worsen your medical situation by not getting the care you need. When the doctor makes treatment recommendations or prescribes medication, you must follow everything they say.
Some severe injuries may not even show their full symptoms in the days after your accident. Your sore body may not move well, but you may not know that you suffered a spinal cord injury.
In the days after the accident doctors can reverse the damage from some injuries. Losing treatment time can lead to injuries growing worse. When you see a doctor, medical treatment can improve your condition.
You Cannot Begin the Legal Process Until You Know Your Medical Condition
Further, you cannot file a claim right after your accident. It may take some time for the extent of your injuries to become apparent. There is a time when your future recovery is uncertain, and doctors are trying different treatments to help you recover as much as possible.
After some time, you will reach the point where further medical treatment may not necessarily help you recover any further. This is known as the point of maximum medical improvement. You generally must wait until then to file a claim. Therefore, you will want to begin medical treatment as soon as possible to pave the way for a legal claim against the responsible driver.
You Need a Lawyer to Deal with the Insurance Company
There may not be much you can do about your legal situation after a motorcycle accident. You file a claim because you suffered injuries. Serious injuries may make dealing with the insurance company and speaking up on your own behalf the last thing you can do.
Even if you can speak to the insurance company, you should not try it. Nothing good comes from dealing with the insurance company on your own. The insurance company has the advantage over you in every facet of your claim if you approach them directly.
The insurance company may approach you, even when you have not filed a claim. The parties often contest liability in a motorcycle accident case. The insurance company may try to find a way to blame you for the accident.
They can attempt to get you to talk to them on the record. They want you to make an admission that can harm your case. The insurance company knows how to get you talking and will try to use everything you say against you.
They will take statements out of context and twist words around to save money at your expense. You may not know that you are under no obligation to talk to the driver’s insurance company.
Your Lawyer Handles the Legal Process For You
Nonetheless, you still need to take steps to further the legal process. Time does not stand still, nor does your need for compensation diminish. It takes time to settle or resolve your motorcycle accident claim, so you must begin the process as soon as possible, even if you do not yet file your claim.
The one step you need to take in the legal process is to call a motorcycle accident lawyer. You need to settle on the legal professional who will represent you as you seek financial compensation. Never take this choice lightly. You place a great deal of trust in your lawyer’s hands. Their efforts can help determine your financial future because it will influence your compensation.
Regardless of your physical condition, you cannot afford to wait to start the legal process. Your family should interview and hire a lawyer for motorcycle accident if you can’t, so you can begin to seek financial compensation.
You Cannot Afford to Lose Time in the Legal Process
The days after a motorcycle accident are critical to the legal process. First, your lawyer will gather evidence to prove liability in your case.
The evidence that can help includes:
- Testimony from people who saw the accident
- Pictures from the scene of the accident
- Traffic or dashcam footage
- The police report (not usable in court)
- Testimony from an accident reconstruction expert
An experienced motorcycle accident attorney can get right to work and keep the legal process moving, so you can focus on your health and recovery. You cannot and should not deal with the details of the legal process. When you hire a motorcycle accident lawyer, they will take care of the case. You must make decisions only after your attorney has given you their professional opinion.
Once your lawyer gathers the necessary evidence, they will help you decide whether to file an insurance claim or a lawsuit. Your attorney can negotiate a settlement agreement fully compensating you for your motorcycle accident injuries.
If they cannot reach a settlement on your behalf, they will file a lawsuit in court. Working through the claims process takes time before you know whether you will need to file a lawsuit.
Do Not Speak Publicly After a Motorcycle Accident
Another crucial thing to do after a motorcycle accident is to keep quiet to the fullest extent possible. Since the insurance company knows they will likely have to pay you a lot, they may try to find ways around it. One thing is to find some evidence to use against you.
Insurance companies may try to follow you or review your social media accounts to see what you are saying about the accident. They can use the pictures you posted or your words to describe the accident. You may not have thought that you posted anything improper. You may have just tried to let your friends know what happened. The insurance company may see it as a goldmine.
Even if your social media has strict privacy settings, the insurance company may still obtain your posts through the discovery process. They can request all your social media activity, and you will have to turn it over as part of the court process.
No matter how tempting it is to say something publicly, you should avoid it because social media can affect your claim. One post you thought was harmless can undo your legal case. You should not even speak to friends about what happened because you never know who may say what publicly.
Avoid posting anything about your life, in general, until your claim concludes. For example, if you post a picture of you enjoying your day, the insurance company may challenge your description of your medical injuries. They may try to cut your pain and suffering damages because they will argue that you are not as injured as you claim.
Be Patient Because Your Case Can Take Time
The next thing you need to do is buckle down and prepare to wait for a settlement check. The legal process involves ups and downs. Things you may think are a victory (such as receiving a settlement offer) may be the start of a lengthy legal process.
You will not get your settlement check shortly after your motorcycle accident. It will take many months or even longer than a year. Before you reach that point, you may need to negotiate extensively with the insurance company, rejecting several offers that do not pay you enough for your injuries. You may even need to take your case to court, where it can go to the jury if there is no settlement.
These steps take time, and you must be patient. The insurance company is counting on you getting impatient and accepting their low settlement offers. You need discipline and patience to let your lawyer do their job. The insurance company believes that time is on their side and that they can wear you down. If you prepare yourself for the long haul, you can level the playing field while your attorney pressures the insurance company to raise their offer.
Do Not Worry About Finances When Hiring a Lawyer
You do not need to worry about how you will get the money to pay for a motorcycle accident lawyer. You do not need to write a big check to secure the help of an attorney. You do not even need to write any checks at all.
You only need to pay your lawyer any money when you get a settlement check or a jury award. You will not get the hourly bills that other types of lawyers send. Personal injury lawyers do not bill you by the hour. You do not need to pay for your lawyer’s services if you do not win your case.
Thus, nothing should prevent you from hiring the attorney you need to maximize your financial recovery in a motorcycle accident case.
Consult a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Near You
The most important thing immediately following a crash is your physical health. You need to see a doctor to get a diagnosis of all your injuries and begin treatment. This helps your healing process and your legal claim.
Your next concern should be seeking the compensation you deserve. Medical bills and losses will add up quickly, so start the process as soon as possible to find a good personal injury law firm in Bakersfield area. The right motorcycle accident attorney can assess your options and begin building a strong case for you right away.