Nothing captures the spirit of adventure and freedom like getting on your motorbike and exploring your surroundings. Yet this activity brings many risks, from serious physical injury to financial loss. In the state of Colorado, motorcyclists only account for 3 percent of the total driving population yet are involved in 22 percent of all fatal road accidents.
If you are traveling on a motorcycle, you must take as much precaution as possible, from making sure you are wearing the best available safety gear to being cautious in your riding. While these can minimize the chances of an accident and its collateral, nothing can completely prevent that risk from occurring.
If you get into a motorcycle accident and are interested in holding the person accountable, follow this article to navigate the complex maze of the legal system.
1. Promptly Report The Event
Reporting a motorcycle accident is a time-sensitive matter where the quality of the evidence you have from the investigation and the extent of damages you can claim depends on how quickly you can collect yourself and call the lawyers and police. Certain legal firms, like Rider Justice, specialize in assisting motorcycle accident victims and can be contacted immediately by phone. These guys are motorcycle lawyers located in Denver who also operate in other areas in Colorado, and they can help you throughout the legal process.
By timely contacting the police, they will be able to gather the most information possible, such as injuries sustained, damage to the vehicle, and other surrounding evidence in the environment. If the accident was a hit-and-run, it also increases the probability that the police can effectively investigate the scene and catch the criminal. If you delay this process too much, there may no longer be a crime scene, and it will be harder for the police to ascertain which injuries and damages were sustained by the accident.
2. Seek Immediate Medical Treatment
Going to a medical practitioner for your injuries is crucial not only for your physical health but also for your legal claim. A medical practitioner can give authorities and your legal team a more comprehensive idea of the injuries sustained through the accident. More importantly, the opinion of a medical professional can serve as a vital piece of evidence as these doctors can help establish a link between the injuries and the accident. It prevents the offending party from claiming that your injuries were not sustained in the accident but occurred elsewhere.
If you have contacted your legal representatives, they can help dispatch an ambulance to your location.
3. Know The Rules Of The Road
Most states in the US accept the doctrine of comparative negligence, where both drivers can claim some compensation from the accident even where they are partly at fault. However, the extent of compensation you receive depends on the level of blame apportioned to you. So if accident damages are around 10,000 dollars and you are 80 percent at fault, you can receive compensation of up to 2,000 dollars.
To avoid receiving only a fraction of the value of the damages, you must make yourself well-versed with all the driving laws of the state you are in and follow them. Knowing all the rules of the road will prevent the other party of the accident, the legal authorities, and your insurance provider from placing blame on you for the accident to lower the amount of money you are due. Whether the cause of the accident is the reckless driving of another or a failure of the government to adequately warn you about the oncoming dangers on the road, knowing the law is an empowering tool that can help you stand up for yourself in such situations.
4. Know How To Handle Insurance Providers
All motorcycle accident claims are handled by insurance providers thanks to laws that make it a legal requirement for anyone to get vehicle insurance if they have a road-worthy vehicle. These rules are important as it means that a victim’s compensation is not dependent on the financial circumstances of the person who caused the accident.
You must know how to navigate interactions with insurance companies to ensure you receive the maximum compensation. Remember, you are not obligated to accept their initial settlement offer. You are also welcome to use your legal representation as a source of assistance to ensure you are not exploited in these interactions. Insurance companies will be interested in minimizing the extent of compensation you are due by trivializing the damages or trying to exploit legal loopholes, and an attorney can be a good layer of protection against these underhanded tactics.
5. Review Any Agreement You Have Reached
Once you accept a settlement, you are waiving the right to pursue further legal action on the matter, so any agreement will be final, even if you regret it immediately after agreeing. To prevent such an event, thoroughly review the terms you have reached, and consult your attorney before making any final decision. A legal expert specializing in road accidents will have a clear idea of the kind of compensation that can be expected from your particular situation and can help guide you toward the fairest possible settlement.
Remember, both the party responsible and their insurance provider want to avoid a long and expensive court case which can result in them being liable for not only the damages of the accident but your case expenses. Getting the consultation of an expert attorney before the matter turns into a lawsuit can help you gain a healthy amount of compensation immediately rather than requiring you to litigate to receive that money.
Getting into an accident can be a traumatic and debilitating experience that can significantly impact your physical and mental health. This accident occurring on a motorcycle increases the likelihood of harm, with no car body to protect you from the impact. If you like traveling via bike, make sure you are wearing safety gear, are traveling carefully, and know what to do and who to contact if emergency strikes.