If you’re fortunate to walk away from a motorcycle accident, it’s likely that you may be seriously injured and unsure of what your next steps should be. As you’re grappling with the aftermath of the crash, we want to help ease some of the overwhelm you are feeling by providing actionable steps you can take. Here are six things to do after a motorcycle accident.
Get Medical Treatment After a Motorcycle Accident
It should be a top priority to see about your health after any type of accident. If you were injured in a motorcycle accident, you are unlikely to have walked away unscathed. Injuries from this type of collision can be serious and catastrophic, necessitating immediate and continuous medical care. If the accident is particularly bad, EMS will be called out to the scene, but even if you were able to come away feeling “fine” at first, injuries may suddenly present themselves days, weeks, and even months later.
With that in mind, it’s important to get checked out soon after the accident so that you can be aware of any potential health concerns that may arise. Traumatic brain injury, soft tissue injuries like (muscle sprains, bruises, etc.) internal bleeding, and organ damage, may not be apparent at first.
Medical treatment is also crucial to a claim for compensation. If someone else caused your accident and you intend to seek damages, it’s imperative that you have documented proof of your injuries and their severity. Further, receiving medical care will also indicate that you suffered damages as a result of the crash. Your medical records and bills will be proof of that.
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Call the Police to the Motorcycle Accident Scene
Legally, if anyone is injured, you are required to report the motorcycle accident. Additionally, police are integral to discovering how the accident happened and documenting the event. A motorcycle crash report should contain pertinent details about the other driver, their vehicle, and insurance.
It will be a key piece of evidence used to investigate your accident in an insurance claim, as it should also contain the officer’s observations and any citations given. The insurer may ask for the crash report, and your motorcycle accident lawyer will be able to use it to support your claim.
Avoid Any Admission of Fault After the Collision
In a motorcycle accident in Georgia, the at-fault driver is liable for the accident. If you caused the crash, you will be responsible for paying damages to those who were harmed. If you also suffered damages and it appears you were at fault, you may not be able to recover compensation under the comparative fault laws.
Your words hold a lot of power in an insurance claim. If you are documented saying anything that can be taken as an admission of guilt or fault, the insurance company will use it against you. It may deny your claim as a result. Even if you feel you may be partially to blame, there may be other factors you are unaware of that contributed to the accident. You should reserve any discussion about it until you have spoken with a motorcycle accident lawyer.
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Document the Motorcycle Accident in Photos and Video
Snap photos and record video footage of the accident scene if you can. If you physically are not able to, you can ask someone else to take them on your phone. Photos and videos of your injuries and the damage done to your bike, other vehicles, and nearby property will go a long way toward demonstrating the severity of the accident.
They will also aid in reconstructing the crash and determining the fault. Insurance companies need to see the harm the motorcycle accident caused you. Photos and videos provide clear evidence.
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Track Your Motorcycle Accident-Related Expenses
Anything that causes you to spend money as a result of a motorcycle collision is an accident-related expense. You can recover the cost of these things in a motorcycle accident injury claim. Medical bills, physical therapy, mental health counseling, damaged property, such as your motorcycle, ride-sharing service, or household services that you can no longer do, are examples of damages you can recoup in a personal injury claim or lawsuit.
Keeping track of these expenses ensures your claim accurately reflects the amount of money you have lost.
Consider Working With a Motorcycle Accident Attorney
An attorney can alleviate a lot of the stress you may be feeling in connection with having to pursue an insurance claim. They can help you get the medical care you need, advise you on speaking with the insurance company or others about your accident, gather evidence to prove that the other driver was at fault (e.g., the police report, photos, video footage, and medical records), and track your accident-related expenses and losses.
A motorcycle accident lawyer will deal with the insurance company for you and negotiate to recover the compensation you deserve. If they cannot agree on a settlement, they can take the case to trial to continue the fight.
The Importance of Hiring Legal Representation Early in Your Case
If you get in touch with a law firm within the first few days or weeks of your motorcycle accident, the more likely the attorneys are to access more evidence. For example, they can locate and interview eyewitnesses while their memories of the crash are still fresh. The personal injury lawyers might also be able to request traffic camera surveillance that captured the accident—this footage is usually destroyed after several days.
Once they build a comprehensive case, they will help you meet the statute of limitations, which is the deadline by which you must sue the other party for your damages. According to O.C.G.A. § 9-3-33, most injury claimants have two years to file suit. Trying to take action any later than that could prompt the court to deny your case. As a result, you’ll have no legal recourse for damages.
That said, if you notify a personal injury attorney of your case sooner rather than later, they can help ensure you comply with the two-year time frame.
Contact Kaine Law After a Motorcycle Accident in Georgia
If you were injured in a motorcycle crash in Georgia, call Kaine Law. An Atlanta motorcycle accident lawyer from our firm will fight for you when you can’t fight for yourself. You’ll only pay for your attorney if we win your case. Call us today for a free consultation. We’re ready to help.