Motorcycle Accident FAQs
Dealing with the aftermath of an accident isn’t easy. Our attorneys can help you
Motorcycle accidents can be confusing, and trying to keep track of all the implications while you’re still recovering from an injury is difficult. Our legal team has extensive experience representing injured motorcyclists, and we’ll be happy to share our knowledge with you. Below are some of the most frequently asked questions about motorcycle accidents:
- What should I do right after a motorcycle accident?
- I was seriously injured in a motorcycle accident. How can I pay my bills?
- How can you help me prove the motorist who hit me was responsible?
- How much compensation can I recover?
- What should I tell insurance adjusters if they contact me?
- When should I accept a settlement after my accident?
We hope this general information will give you an idea of how to proceed after an accident. For more information about your specific case, contact Flager & Associates, PC for a free case evaluation. Remember, there is no fee unless we recover a favorable settlement or judgment on your behalf.
What should I do right after a motorcycle accident?
1) Escape any immediate danger. More than half of motorcycle accidents involve fuel leaks and spills, which can lead to fire and even explosions. Make sure you and anyone else on the scene is out of danger.
2) Seek medical assistance, even if you feel fine. If you sustained injuries in a motorcycle accident, you need to be transported to an emergency room for medical care. If you’re able to walk away from the scene, you still need to see a doctor as soon as possible. Motorcycle accidents often cause internal injuries that can take some time to become obvious, and getting checked out right away is the only way to protect your health.
3) Contact the police. If you are able to do so, report the crash to law enforcement. The police will document the facts of the accident, identifying witnesses, victims and any others involved. Insurance companies often blame the wreck on the rider, so it’s crucial to protect yourself immediately.
4) Write down or take mental note of details. If you’re able to take pictures of the scene, do so as well. Take particular note if anyone accepts responsibility for the accident – and don’t say anything accepting responsibility yourself. Stick to the facts of what happened.
5) Contact us as soon as you can. A motorcycle accident requires a great deal of investigation. In any accident, evidence and witnesses soon disappear. The quicker an investigation starts, the better your chances of receiving the full compensation you deserve.
I was seriously injured in a motorcycle accident. How can I pay my bills?
In most cases, motorcycle insurance does not include personal injury protection (PIP) – the type of insurance that pays benefits to you if you are injured in an accident. Some insurers do provide this protection, but most do not because motorcycle accidents can cause such severe injuries. That means you’ll need to pay for your medical care through your employer-provided health insurance.
However, if another motorist was at fault for the accident, you can pursue a personal injury claim just like anyone else on the road. Motorcycle insurance, unlike auto insurance, does not include limited or full tort options, so you can get compensation for any costs associated with the accident including pain and suffering.
Because of the lack of PIP, it’s especially important for motorcyclists to have enough uninsured or underinsured motorist coverage (UM/UIM) in case they are injured by a driver who doesn’t have insurance – or doesn’t have enough to pay for the high cost of severe motorcycle injuries. If you own both a car and a motorcycle, you can stack your UM/UIM coverage together; for instance, if you have $100,000 per injury/$300,000 per accident on each vehicle, stacking gives you $200,000/$600,000 available in coverage. The cost to do this is quite small compared to the amount of coverage you gain.
How can you help me prove the motorist who hit me was responsible?
Motorists commonly cause motorcycle accidents in several ways. Nearly two-thirds of motorcycle accidents involve a car turning in front of the motorcycle and failing to yield the right of way. Motorcycles are often hit by distracted or asleep-at-the-wheel drivers because they are so small and easy to overlook.
With decades of experience handling car and motorcycle accidents, our attorneys know how to find the evidence proving negligence on the part of the motorist who caused your accident. We’ll interview witnesses, examine pictures of the accident scene and review police reports and other records to find the proof we need. For instance, looking at the skid marks – or lack of them – can reveal that the driver who hit you was asleep at the wheel. We’ll leave no stone unturned to help you get the compensation you need.
How much compensation can I recover?
Motorcycle accidents can cause serious injuries, which means there’s the potential for serious damages. You may be entitled to compensation for medical bills, lost wages and, if you’re going to be out of work for an extended period of time, lost future earnings. An injury might lead to chronic pain, in which case you can sue for pain and suffering. If a back or spine injury leaves you paralyzed and unable to have normal interactions with family members, you can also pursue damages for loss of consortium.
Many victims of motorcycle accidents end up settling for less compensation than they need because they aren’t aware of all these possible avenues. That’s why you need a veteran attorney from Flager & Associates on your side to review your case and pursue every applicable source of compensation.
What should I tell insurance adjusters if they contact me?
Insurance companies aren’t on your side in the wake of a motorcycle accident. They’ll try to argue that you assumed the risk of injury by getting on a motorcycle, or even that you caused the accident. An adjuster’s job is to reduce or deny the claim by any means necessary, and any information you provide is going to be used to bolster their case.
You do need to report the accident to your own insurance company, but in that initial call, stick to the facts of what happened and don’t say anything that could be construed as admitting fault. If an adjuster calls you after that – whether from your own insurer or from another driver’s – don’t give them any information at all. Call us as soon as possible and retain one of our attorneys; then, tell anyone requesting comment to speak with your attorney. Don’t tell them anything before talking to us first.
When should I accept a settlement after my accident?
Insurance companies tend to be especially difficult when dealing with motorcycle accidents. Often, that means denying claims altogether, but sometimes, it means they’ll offer a seemingly reasonable settlement soon after the accident. This isn’t generosity; it’s a calculated move on their part. By paying out a settlement now, they protect themselves from being sued when the true cost of the accident is known.
Don’t accept any settlement offer until you’ve completed your medical treatment and have been pronounced healthy by a doctor, and make sure you talk to us first. Our attorneys will make sure your settlement actually pays for the full cost of the accident, and we’ll explore every possible avenue of compensation. Most of the time, you’ll find that that initial offer is much less than the insurance is actually willing to pay.
Contact Flager & Associates, PC
Located in Bensalem (across from the Neshaminy Mall), with offices in Philadelphia and New Hope, our law firm proudly serves injury victims throughout Pennsylvania and New Jersey.
One Northbrook Corporate Center
1210 Northbrook Drive
Feasterville-Trevose, PA 19053
Phone: (215) 953-5200
Fax: (215) 953-5214
Two Penn Center Plaza
1500 John F Kennedy Blvd
Philadelphia, PA 19102
Phone: (215) 953-5200