What to Expect After a Motorcycle Accident
A motorcycle accident can be jarring for all parties involved. But sometimes the aftermath can be just as disorienting.
You are receiving letters and phone calls from insurance adjusters and investigators and just don’t know what to do. Ordinary daily tasks you once took for granted are now painful and difficult to manage. The hobbies and pastimes you have enjoyed for years suddenly cause immense discomfort. Ordinary daily chores, like doing the laundry and cleaning the floors are now impossible, and you rely on your friends and family to do things you once did on your own. You can no longer work and doubt whether you will be able to provide for your family. You feel like you have lost your sense of autonomy and independence, becoming more and more reliant on the people around you. You can’t find a comfortable sleeping position and endure restless nights. The lack of sleep affects your quality of life because you are in a constant state of drowsiness and fatigue.
Put simply, the impact of a motorcycle accident can change more than just the trajectory of your bike. It can change the entire trajectory of your life. Fortunately, you do have options and may have a chance to be made “whole” after a motorcycle accident, and an experienced motorcycle accident attorney can help you achieve this.
Every situation is unique and it is difficult to generalize, but here are a few things you might expect after a motorcycle accident.
The hours following a motorcycle accident
In the immediate aftermath of a motorcycle accident, you should expect the responding police officer to draft a police accident report. This document is critical. It will contain basic information about those involved in the motorcycle accident, as well as insurance information that you will need to reference later on. When the police officer responds, always be cooperative and provide your side of the story so that it is documented in the police accident report. You will eventually receive a copy of the report, and you will also have the opportunity to review it. If you notice a material inaccuracy you may request that the police accident report be amended to correct the inaccuracy. There is no guarantee your request will be honored, but it may be worth the attempt.
Police accident reports are limited, because the responding officer does not often have direct personal knowledge of the manner of the collision. For this reason, the responding officer will often base his or her conclusions on limited available information—including statements from witnesses. If the police accident report does not appear to be in your favor, and you attempted without success to obtain an amendment, do not be concerned. Many of the findings and conclusions contained in the document will not be admissible in a court of law.
The most important thing after a motorcycle accident is your well-being and health. For this reason, if you were involved in a motorcycle accident you should consider seeking appropriate medical treatment. Every situation is unique, so it is always a good idea to seek medical treatment following a motorcycle crash.
The days after a motorcycle crash
The paperwork starts to come in. You will receive paperwork in the mail from at least one insurance company. Even though New York is a no-fault state, meaning that an insurance company will sometimes pay for certain lost wages and medical expenses, no-fault insurance does not normally apply to motorcycle riders. This means some of your medical bills and lost wages will be paid by a different insurance company. A motorcycle accident attorney can help you identify how your medical bills and lost wages will be paid.
You may also receive correspondences or a telephone call from the at-fault driver’s insurance company. An investigator hired by the at-fault driver’s insurance company may also contact you. You should be wary when interacting with the at-fault driver’s insurance company or anyone acting on its behalf. This insurance company is responsible for indemnifying the at-fault driver for his or her negligence, meaning it will have to pay for damage caused. Because insurance companies are always looking to save money, they will sometimes attempt to make a nuisance offer of a few thousand dollars to protect the insured and prevent the need to pay a higher sum at a later time. If you accept one of these nuisance offers you may be prevented from asserting your legal rights at a later time. Be very careful.
The months that follow a motorcycle accident
If you are still struggling to go about your daily affairs, you may have a claim for pain and suffering. In New York, most motorists have to show a “serious injury” to recover for pain and suffering. Because motorcyclists do not generally receive no-fault benefits, they do not need to show a “serious injury” to recover for pain and suffering. The nature and severity of pain and suffering will merely affect the amount of damages.
Hurt Riding a Motorcycle? Call William Mattar.
The attorneys at William Mattar Law Offices have experience in filing claims for personal injury after a motorcycle accident. Do not attempt to tackle this traumatic event alone. Call our motorcycle accident attorneys to see if you have a case today at (844) 444-4444.