Motorcycling is a hobby enjoyed by millions across the United States – and for good reason. A motorcycle offers freedom, fun, and thrill that you just can’t get in a car or truck.
However, all riders need to understand that they are more vulnerable to accidents on a motorcycle and must know what to do in the event of a crash to protect themselves.
You don’t want to be held liable for damages if another vehicle was at fault or something out of your control like poor road conditions led to the accident, and following the proper steps in the aftermath will help you achieve just compensation.
The dedicated motorcycle accident lawyers of Glen Larson Law Injury Attorneys have helped hundreds of injury victims get results, and this checklist will help you support your claim after a motorcycle accident.
CHECK FOR INJURIES & CALL 911
Motorcycle accidents are far more likely to result in serious bodily injury than other types of accidents.
If you are conscious after an accident, the first thing you need to do is quickly evaluate yourself and anyone else involved, then call 911 to make a report.
If there are potential injuries to your head, neck, or spine, sit still and wait for paramedics to arrive so you don’t make the injuries worse.
TAKE PHOTOS OF THE ACCIDENT SCENE
Photographic evidence of the scene will be critical when it comes time to make an insurance claim.
Before moving the motorcycle or other vehicles off the road, carefully document everything you can with your smartphone. This includes:
- Where any vehicles involved ended up
- Damage to the motorcycle and other vehicles
- Documentation (driver’s licenses, insurance cards, registration, license plate numbers, etc.)
- Skid marks on the road
- Road conditions and signs
- People and injuries
- Any other pertinent details
Your goal should be to gather as much information as possible regarding the cause and result of the accident.
While the police will take their own accident scene photos, having additional angles and details may be critical when it’s time to make a claim.
GATHER WITNESS STATEMENTS
Try to obtain statements from anyone involved with the crash, including drivers, passengers, witnesses, police officers, etc.
If possible, record these on our smartphones as well.
The more information you have from people directly after the accident, the better off you will be when it comes time to receive compensation from the insurance company.
CONTACT AN EXPERIENCED AUSTIN MOTORCYCLE ACCIDENT ATTORNEY
Insurance companies aren’t in the business of handing out fair compensation their goal will always be to get injured parties to accept as low of a payout as possible.
If you are not at fault, the other party’s insurance company will likely try to pressure you to accept a settlement and waive your right to file a lawsuit. Their hope is that you may be suffering financially from the accident and be willing to accept the first offer.
This is often a big mistake, as you almost certainly not being compensated for everything you are owed.
They may also try to pin the blame on the motorcyclist even if it wasn’t your fault at all to get out of paying you anything.
An experienced Texas motorcycle accident lawyer will be able to step in and uncover relevant facts that the insurance company tries to ignore.
At Glen Larson Law Injury Attorneys, we will fight to get you every dollar you are owed while you focus on recovering.
CALL YOUR INSURANCE COMPANY
As soon as you have gathered as much pertinent information as possible, report the accident to your insurance company.
However, be very careful about the information you divulge. Do not give details on injuries or damage to your motorcycle. They will likely ask for that information, but you need to tell them you will wait for an evaluation from a doctor and repair shop.
If you understate the severity of injuries or damages upfront, it can be more difficult for you to obtain just compensation later.
OBTAIN AN ACCIDENT REPORT
Texas police are required to submit a written crash report to the Texas Department Of Transportation within 10 days of an accident that results in injury or death of a person, or more than $1,000 in property damage.
This report will include the details of the crash, as well as an account from all parties involved. These details could be critical when it comes to determining liability.
GET CHECKED OUT BY A DOCTOR
Don’t play mister tough guy. Even if you just feel a little shaken up by the accident, it is critical that you seek an evaluation from a doctor or urgent care the day of the accident.
In fact, one of the go-to arguments from insurance companies trying to avoid an injury payout is the victim didn’t seek medical care immediately.
Another important reason to seek an immediate medical evaluation is that many motorcycle injuries aren’t visible from the outside – you could have internal injuries and head trauma like concussions can have lingering effects that could take years of treatment.
Ideally, you’ll just escape with some scrapes and bruises. However, seeing a doctor ASAP (within 24 hours) will help support your claim and ensure there aren’t more serious injuries.
DOCUMENT, DOCUMENT, DOCUMENT
Motorcycle accident compensation doesn’t just involve damage to the bike. Keep track of everything, including lost wages from an inability to work, travel time to and from the doctor, medical treatment and examinations, prescription costs, physical therapy, etc.
Depending on the severity of your injuries, you may be out of commission for weeks or months as you recover.
Carefully document every expense related to the motorcycle accident, including things like extra childcare or professional services (lawn care, gutter cleaning, etc.) that were needed while you recover from your injuries.
Additionally, keeping a journal of your everyday quality of life can be extremely beneficial while recovering from injury. Even little things like difficulty tying your own shoes or performing basic household chores can help support your case.
GLEN LARSON LAW IS HERE TO HELP
All Texas motorcyclists need to be prepared for what to do after an accident to ensure they receive fair compensation.
Our dedicated Austin motorcycle accident attorneys are ready to fight for everything you deserve. As a results-driven law firm, we pride ourselves on going above and beyond to help our clients get what they are owed and back on the road.