The Top 6 Things You Should Never Do If You Are in a Motorcycle Accident
Motorcycle accidents are some of the most damaging and deadly vehicle accidents that can occur in the US. If you ever experience such an accident, it is crucial to know how to handle the situation appropriately if you want to maximize your recovery. One of the first things you should do after an accident is to secure legal representation from a skilled motorcycle accident lawyer. However, it’s also important to keep in mind a few things you should never do if you are in a motorcycle accident. Read the following and remember to avoid these costly mistakes if you want the best chance of securing the recovery you and your family need after a motorcycle accident.
One: Never Admit Fault at the Scene of a Motorcycle Accident
It may seem innocuous at first but saying anything as simple as “I’m sorry” at the scene of a motorcycle accident can come back to haunt you later. It’s required by California state law for any driver involved in an accident that results in death, injury, or property damage to report the accident to the police and remain at the scene until the police arrive to investigate. When the police arrive, answer their questions honestly and concisely but do not admit fault in any way. They will include everything you say in their police report. Any admissions of fault can make it difficult or impossible to secure insurance coverage or personal injury compensation.
Two: Never Falsify Information You Provide to the Police
The police will generate a report of your accident, including everything you said to them at the accident scene or the hospital, depending on when and where they interviewed you. It is crucial to not only refrain from admitting fault but also from saying anything untrue when speaking to the police. If you do not know the answer to a question, simply tell the truth that you don’t know. Falsifying any information given to the police will have severe consequences, potentially even criminal prosecution.
Three: Never Accept an Insurance Settlement Before Speaking to an Attorney
One of the most common mistakes motorcycle accident victims make is contacting their insurance companies too soon after their accidents. While you have the right to claim insurance coverage after an accident, it’s important to consult an attorney first. Accepting an insurance settlement releases the carrier from liability for future claims related to the same accident. If you rush to accept the first settlement offered, you risk accepting a lowball settlement when an attorney could have secured much more on your behalf.
Four: Never Assume You Aren’t Hurt
Your health and safety should be your immediate priorities following a motorcycle accident. The experience of a vehicle accident can cause a surge of adrenaline that dulls pain sensations. It’s not uncommon for people to walk away from accidents feeling as though they emerged unscathed only to feel incredible pain the next day. Seek medical attention as soon as possible after a motorcycle accident. Not only does this ensure any injuries you may have suffered get prompt treatment, but it also establishes a record that you sought immediate care should you need to file a lawsuit later.
Five: Never Agree to Settlement Without an Attorney
Some people experience minor fender-benders that involve no injuries and only cosmetic damage to their vehicles. It may be acceptable to reach a personal agreement with the other driver in these situations, but motorcycle accidents are rarely so simple. Never agree to a private settlement with an at-fault driver without consulting an attorney. Even if they seem to be agreeable to assuming liability for their actions, you cannot be certain that you are getting the compensation you rightfully deserve unless you consult an attorney.
Six: Never Talk About Your Case on Social Media
Most attorneys will tell their clients to avoid social media entirely when involved with a legal case. While it’s fine to passively browse your social media pages, refrain from posting anything, even if you think it’s entirely unrelated to your case. Social media profiles are publicly accessible, and anything you post could potentially be used against you by a defendant in a personal injury claim or an insurance company.
Now that you know what not to do after a motorcycle accident in California, remember that the most important thing you should do after seeking medical care for your injuries is to contact an experienced and reliable personal injury attorney who can help you secure compensation for your losses. The Law Offices of Susan Handel are available to assist motorcycle accident victims in Southern California. If you’re ready to discuss your legal options after a motorcycle accident, contact us today and schedule a case evaluation with an experienced motorcycle accident attorney.