What to Do After a Motorcycle Accident?
By Team at Zimmet & Zimmet, In Personal injury
Motorcyclists in Florida make up just three percent of all registered vehicles. They account for under one percent of vehicle miles traveled on roads in the Sunshine State, and in the past five years, just two percent of accidents involved a motorcycle. While the statistics may seem promising, the issue is that motorcycle fatalities account for 17% of all traffic accident deaths in the state.
While the possibility of being involved in a motorcycle accident is ever-present, the possibility of being killed if one occurs is high. Because of this, motorcyclists should take preventative measures to keep an accident from happening.
If an accident does occur, riders need to know what steps to take to protect their rights. One of the first steps is to contact an accident attorney from Zimmet & Zimmet to help with the personal injury claim against the at-fault party.
Steps to Take After Being Involved in a Motorcycle Accident
While it is important to hire an injury attorney soon after an incident occurs, there are other steps that come first. These are things that you should do while at the accident scene. They are also things that most accident injury attorneys would recommend.
Get Somewhere Safe
The first thing riders should do is to look at their surroundings and the situation they are in. For example, is the rider in harm’s way? Are there serious injuries? If a rider can, they should remove themselves from the road and out of traffic. It’s also important to see if anyone else is injured and help them get to safety.
Keep Protective Gear On
After a motorcycle accident, a rider may be in shock. The adrenaline is usually high at this time too, which can prevent them from feeling any injuries or pain. Remember that it is best to wait for the paramedics to arrive before removing safety gear to ensure injuries aren’t made worse.
Contact the Authorities
Once you are safe and before removing protective gear, contact the authorities to report the accident. The report created by the authorities will be important evidence your motorcycle accident attorney can use to help you recover compensation for your injuries and damages.
Be Evaluated by a Medical Professional
You may not feel injured right after an accident; however, it’s smart to be checked out by a medical professional after an accident. More serious injuries may not appear immediately, and it can take days, weeks, and even months for symptoms to appear. If you fail to seek medical treatment right after a motorcycle accident, it may be hard for your accident lawyer to prove that your injury resulted from it.
Regardless of whether the accident was minor or severe, you should gather evidence immediately. This includes taking pictures and notes of what happened and getting a copy of the police report. Speak to other drivers and witnesses to get their contact information too. This is all information that your accident injury lawyer will need when it comes to filing a lawsuit to help you recover compensation for the damages and losses incurred.
Financial Compensation Available After a Motorcycle Accident
After a motorcycle accident, you can receive several types of financial compensation. Your motorcycle accident lawyer will provide you with information about the type of compensation you can receive.
The two types of compensation you can receive include economic damages and non-economic damages. Learn more about these here.
Economic Damages After a Motorcycle Accident
You can recover several types of economic damages after a motorcycle accident. These include:
Medical Care Costs
Medical costs are significant after a more serious injury. After a motorcycle accident, the treatment you require may include:
- Transportation to the ER in an ambulance
- Emergency treatment for injuries
- Rehabilitation, including physical therapy
Medical care costs are a top cause of financial pressure. Along with the costs related to emergent medical treatment, motorcycle accident victims may also face emotional, mental, and physical challenges that require continued treatment.
When you hire a personal injury attorney, they will consider the current and future medical costs you are dealing with because of the accident. Our accident attorney will document all costs to ensure you get a fair amount of compensation.
Another source of financial stress after being involved in a motorcycle accident is that you may not be able to work. Recovering from accident-related injuries may create limitations that keep you from returning to work and doing the same job you did before you were injured. This may deprive your family of the income needed to pay your bills and the other costs related to the accident.
It’s possible to receive compensation for lost wages as part of your economic damages. This includes income you would earn during the time you missed from work and the wages you may lose due to impairment caused by injuries.
You can also pursue compensation for any other losses you experience because of a motorcycle accident. Some of the types of damages that occur include:
- Prescription medications
- Damage to your bike or your other personal property
- Assistive equipment like a cane, crutches, or wheelchair
- Hired help that is needed like a housekeeper or in-house nurse
- Travel to medical appointments
- Modifications needed for your vehicle or home
Just like other economic damages discussed, it is important to keep organized records of receipts and bills for any expenses after your motorcycle accident. Sometimes, you can receive a large amount of compensation, but only if your accident attorney can prove your financial losses.
Non-Economic Damages After a Motorcycle Accident
When determining how much compensation you should receive after a motorcycle accident, our legal team will ensure that all costs and damages are accounted for. Economic damages refer to losses that have a specific dollar value. However, non-economic damages may be recovered, too. These are the unquantifiable costs of a motorcycle accident. Some examples include:
Pain and Suffering
This broad term encompasses the negative impact on your quality of life after a motorcycle accident. It refers to the physical pain of the injuries and the emotional and mental effects you experience.
While physical injuries heal, the trauma caused by a motorcycle accident often has a long-term impact on your overall state of mind. After an accident, you may experience post-traumatic stress disorder, depression, and anxiety. Some incidents also cause scarring or disfiguring injuries that you may feel self-conscious about due to how it has affected your appearance.
Pain and suffering damages will also compensate for disruptions to your daily life.
To determine the amount of compensation you receive for pain and suffering, your attorney must present evidence showing how severe your injury was. Other evidence that must be gathered to show how the injury has affected your life include:
- Records and testimony acquired during the aftermath of the accident
- Testimony from family and friends
- Medical records related to your physical condition
- Therapist records if you received counseling after your accident
- Testimony from any experts relevant to your injuries
Usually, compensation for pain and suffering is determined using a multiplier. The costs you have incurred (economic damages) are multiplied by a value that is determined by how serious your accident was. We work for you to help you receive the compensation you deserve for your injuries.
Loss of Consortium
This type of damage refers to the impact of your accident or injury on the relationship you have with family members. While nothing will replace a relationship with a family member who is seriously injured in a motorcycle accident, receiving financial compensation will help families mend their lives while adjusting to the “new normal” they are facing.
There are several different family members whom you can seek loss of consortium damages for after a motorcycle accident, including children, parents, and spouses.
Each member of the family will suffer from the loss of consortium in a unique way. For example, for a spouse, injuries may impact household contributions and the intimacy and affection that most married relationships have. For children, their parent’s injuries could mean they don’t receive the guidance or support they should. When parents have an injured child from a motorcycle accident, it may impact the loving relationship that once existed between the child and the parent.
Determining if you are eligible for loss of consortium is usually dependent on the testimony of your loved ones.
How a Motorcycle Accident Lawyer Can Help You
When you hire our accident lawyers at Zimmet & Zimmet, you can feel confident that we will work to help you get the maximum compensation for your injuries and damages. The first step is to get in touch and schedule a free initial consultation.