If you were injured in a motorcycle crash, the things you do in the moments following the collision are crucial. If you follow the advice outlined here, your Hollywood motorcycle accident lawyer will have the best chance of getting you the compensation you deserve.
Always Call 911 Immediately After the Motorcycle Crash
The first thing you need to do after any motor vehicle accident is call 911 to report the crash.
In some cases, the driver may try to convince you not to do this. They may offer to pay for the damage to your bike. Or they may argue that you’ll spend half your day waiting for the police to investigate the crash.
The driver may have ulterior motives for not wanting to call the police. Some of these may include:
- They don’t have insurance and don’t want to get in trouble
- Their license is suspended or revoked
- They may be driving a stolen car
- They could be under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- They know they caused the crash and don’t want the police to investigate.
You need to protect yourself. But it is not only about protecting your chances to file a potential claim for damages. Failing to report a traffic accident resulting in injuries and property damage is against the law in Florida.
Check Everyone Involved to See If They Are Seriously Injured
While you’re waiting for the officers to arrive, check to see if anybody is seriously hurt. This way, when the police arrive, you can let them know if anyone needs emergency medical treatment.
You also need to take your condition into consideration. Even if you think you’re fine, you still need to seek medical care. Motorcycle accidents cause a wide range of injuries, some of which are not apparent moments after the crash.
Exchange Contact and Insurance Information With the Driver
This step is extremely important after a motorcycle crash. Talk to the driver and exchange basic information: name, contact details, and insurance information. You will need this when you file your claim.
If the driver does not want to produce this information, let the officers know when they arrive. They have the means and authority to obtain these details. They will also document their findings in their police report.
Take Pictures or Video of the Accident Scene
If you are able to take pictures or a video of the accident scene, they will be very helpful to prove your case.
It’s also a good idea to record any conversations you have with the driver, their passengers, or witnesses. If they change their story later, your attorney may be able to use this information.
Go to the Hospital to Receive Treatment for Your Injuries
When the police offer to call an ambulance, do not refuse their offer. You need to see a doctor so they can check for injuries. The doctor will run the necessary diagnostic tests to determine the nature and extent of your injuries.
Some of the tests the doctor will run include:
- CT scan
- Neurological examination
- Physical examination
The doctor will record their findings in your medical records. This is where your motorcycle crash attorney will find the specific details about your injuries and treatment. When it is time to prove your damages, this information will be critical.
File a Claim Under Personal Injury Protection (PIP) First
In Florida, you cannot file a claim with the at-fault driver’s insurance company until you’ve filed a PIP claim with your own insurance carrier.
PIP stands for “personal injury protection.” Florida law requires all drivers to carry this type of insurance. It only covers $10,000, so the odds of it covering all of your damages are low.
However, it will cover some of your immediate medical expenses, such as:
- Diagnostic tests
- Lost wages
PIP will only cover your injuries if you receive medical treatment within 14 days of the crash. It also only covers treatment for serious or permanent injuries.
File a Claim With the Driver’s Insurance Carrier
In most of the cases, once your PIP coverage is exhausted, you’ll still have unpaid damages. Thus, you need to file a claim with the at-fault driver’s insurance policy. Your accident attorney will help you do this.
Your claim will include the following:
- Future medical care
- Lost wages
- Lost future income
- Pain and suffering
- Property damage
- Any medical bills not covered by PIP
Once your claim is filed, the defendant’s insurance company will either approve your claim or deny it. They may also choose to pay part of your claim. If this is the case, your attorney will try to negotiate full payment. If need be, the lawyer will file a lawsuit on your behalf.
Reach Out to a Hollywood Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Right Away to Discuss Your Case
A motorcycle crash can be extremely traumatizing, resulting in severe injuries and significant medical bills. The last thing you know is being worried whether you can get compensation for these damages.
The best thing to do is to contact an experienced personal injury lawyer in Hollywood, Florida.
A seasoned attorney will review the available information and evidence, along with any other details you can give regarding the crash. We will help you figure out what to do next. And, if necessary, they can help you file a lawsuit.
To schedule your free, initial consultation, call our office at 954-915-7405.