How Does Motorcycle Insurance Work After a Crash?

June 1, 2024 | David Abels
How Does Motorcycle Insurance Work After a Crash?

After a crash, the motorcycle insurance process is front and center. Through this process, you may obtain compensation covering medical bills, motorcycle repairs, and certain other covered losses. However, this process is not without its challenges and pitfalls, so consider hiring a motorcycle accident attorney to handle your case.

Accidents like yours are associated with severe injuries. Failing to focus on your health can harm your long-term well-being and your injury case. Work with a lawyer to achieve the best results in both your physical and financial recovery.

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Types of Motorcycle Insurance You May Utilize After a Crash

All motorists must maintain substantial insurance coverage, but it’s even more important for riders. The severe injuries associated with motorcycle accidents mean insurance coverage can be a financial lifesaver (and potentially an actual lifesaver if it covers critical medical care).

Some types of insurance that may apply after your motorcycle collision may include:

  • Personal injury protection (PIP): This coverage applies to medical expenses for you and passengers injured during the accident.
  • Medical payments (MedPay) coverage: This coverage serves a similar function as PIP coverage, but different states use different coverage types for medical expenses.
  • Collision coverage: Collision coverage should pay for the repair or replacement of your bike. You likely have a deductible to meet, but this coverage can be immensely helpful if your motorcycle sustained significant damage.
  • Uninsured/underinsured (UM/UIM) coverage: If the motorist who caused your accident is uninsured or has insufficient coverage, you may access your UM/UIM coverage to account for the difference.
  • Coverage for custom parts: This coverage may apply to repairing or replacing non-standard motorcycle components.

Insurance frameworks are complicated, and you may be entitled to compensation through these and other forms of coverage. Your lawyer will become familiar with your policy and the policies of those responsible for your accident. They will identify all applicable coverages and seek the compensation you deserve.

Steps in a Post-Crash Motorcycle Insurance Claim

While every motorcycle accident and claim is different, there are several steps that occur in most claims processes. This includes:

Notification of Authorities and Insurers

Motorcycle Insurance

It is important to notify your insurance provider as soon as possible after your accident. However, you should be cautious about giving too much detail about the accident right away because:

  • Saying (or implying) the wrong thing can indicate that you were responsible for the accident
  • You may be disoriented after the accident, so you may be more prone to making verbal mistakes
  • Insurance companies are not necessarily on your side, as their interests may be to pay out as little compensation as possible
  • You may want to have a lawyer on your side before you give any detailed recorded statements

This is a delicate balancing act, as you must not delay reporting the accident or resulting injuries. The remedy is to hire an experienced lawyer as soon as possible. They will help you give an accurate statement that clearly identifies who is at fault for the accident.

Giving Recorded Statements to Insurers

Recorded statements are important because:

  • They let the insurance companies know how the accident happened
  • They can help establish who is at fault for the accident (and your covered losses)
  • They are a necessary step in resolving the claim and securing compensation

Though necessary, recorded statements often compromise motorcycle riders' claims. Hire a lawyer to ensure your statement benefits rather than hurts your recovery. Your attorney may even arrange for you to provide a written statement, which poses a lesser risk of errors.

Investigation of the Accident (by Insurers and Your Lawyers)

Everyone with a stake in the insurance process will investigate the collision. This includes insurance companies, your lawyer, and lawyers for others involved in the accident.

Your attorney will secure all evidence that is relevant to your claim, including any:

  • Video footage of the collision or events related to the accident (like the at-fault motorist speeding)
  • Eyewitness accounts of the accident
  • Accounts of those involved in the accident, including yours
  • Experts’ testimony about who is at fault for the accident
  • An expert’s reconstruction of the accident
  • Photographs of accident-related motor vehicle damage

Motorcycle accident lawyers conduct their investigations right away, knowing that evidence is not always available for long.

Examination by Medical Professionals

It is critical to document your injuries in detail because the severity of injuries is one of the key determinants of your case's value. You may have already received some medical care, but your lawyer can pair you with a doctor for an even more in-depth evaluation.

It is important that you:

  • Voice accident-related injury symptoms
  • Undergo a thorough physical examination
  • Undergo X-rays, CT scans, and other medical images as necessary
  • Receive specific diagnoses for all injuries
  • Receive as much documentation as possible of your injuries and symptoms

Documenting the care you receive and will receive in the future is critical, as treatment may account for a large portion of your medical expenses.

Settlement Negotiations

Insurance companies deserve the opportunity to pay motorcycle accident victims fairly, and they will have the opportunity. Considering that most accident claims settle, you may secure fair compensation through insurers.

However, insurance companies do not always offer fair compensation. Your attorney may need to provide detailed documentation of your losses, address the insurance company’s objections, and remain firm in their settlement demands.

Motorcycle accident claims can become lawsuits when:

  • At-fault parties have no insurance or insufficient insurance to cover your losses
  • The monetary cost of your losses is more than coverage limits within insurance policies
  • Insurance companies will not offer fair compensation for your losses

Other circumstances may also lead you to file a lawsuit against those who owe you compensation. Before taking legal action, your attorney will discuss all of your options and allow you to make the decision about filing suit.

Steps Every Rider Should Take After a Motorcycle Accident

Every injured rider should:

  • Get all necessary medical attention: If you wait to get medical treatment after a motorcycle accident, you expose yourself to allegations that injuries are not especially serious or not the result of the accident. While it is understandable to take some time to decompress, you should not delay in getting medical attention.
  • Retain a proven, capable motorcycle accident attorney: Hiring a lawyer is almost as time-sensitive as getting medical attention. Your attorney will need to file your case before the statute of limitations expires and will also need to obtain time-sensitive evidence right away.
  • Be cautious and focus on recovery: You should regard insurance companies with wariness. Allow your lawyer to deal with insurers whenever possible. Your job is to focus on your health, recover as quickly as possible, and rely on your attorney to handle your case.

If you take these steps, you give your case the greatest odds for success.

Hire a Motorcycle Insurance Claim Lawyer to Deal with Insurers—Here’s Why

Motorcycle accidents are overrepresented among fatal traffic collisions. Even when riders survive, they often struggle with severe pain, disabling injuries, and mental health deficits. These challenges demand your undivided attention, and you might hire a motorcycle accident lawyer because:

  • Your recovery demands it: Nobody can dictate your recovery time except you and your doctors. You owe it to yourself to focus on your health rather than your case.
  • You cannot handle the case: Your physical and psychological condition may prevent you from handling the demands of your case, even if you want to handle them.
  • Motorcycle accident attorneys have experience that you do not: A lawyer’s experience with claims and lawsuits has significant value. From legal strategies to potential challenges, your lawyer will be operating in familiar territory.
  • A law firm can ease financial concerns about your case: Your attorney will provide financial support for your case (more on that shortly), which may be critical during a time of uncertainty.
  • You know your case may go to trial, and you want a lawyer to lead any necessary court case: If insurers don’t provide fair compensation, you may need to file a lawsuit and possibly go to trial. These are steps you likely cannot take on your own, so having a lawyer from the start allows you to sue.

Hiring a lawyer may pay dividends for your health and case, so don’t wait to find a trustworthy attorney to represent you.

What You Must Know About Motorcycle Accident Lawyers’ Fee Structure

It is worth examining the fee structure motorcycle accident attorneys typically use. This structure is called a contingency fee, and it’s generally favorable for clients because:

  • You will pay no out-of-pocket fees or costs to your law firm
  • Your attorney will spend much time and effort on your case, and they will only get paid if they secure a settlement or verdict for you
  • Your law firm may invest significant resources in your case, including expert services
  • You take no financial risk related to your case—your lawyer does

Knowing you don’t have to pay any upfront costs to a lawyer allows you to retain your attorney right away.

Your Attorney Will Oversee the Claims Process and Any Necessary Lawsuit

When your lawyer takes over your case, they become responsible for:

Evaluating All Relevant Policies

A lawyer working on a case

Your attorney will delve into all relevant insurance policies. They will note coverage conditions, coverage limits, and other relevant details.

Knowing the facts about insurance policies will ensure your lawyer can negotiate effectively on your behalf.

Communicating with Insurers

Your attorney will handle communications with insurance companies. This will ensure your claim moves forward as quickly as possible and also protect you from rights violations that can compromise your claim.

Documenting the Harm You’ve Suffered Due to the Crash

Documentation of your damages will be necessary to prove the cost of the motorcycle accident, and your lawyer may gather:

  • Medical records
  • X-rays and other images of internal injuries
  • Photographs of visible injuries
  • Copies of all accident-related medical bills
  • Invoices for the repair or replacement of your bike
  • Employment and financial records proving the professional cost of your accident
  • Mental health experts’ testimony about your pain and suffering

Attorneys will provide great detail about the harm you’ve suffered because of the accident (and the person who caused it).

Calculating the Financial Value of Your Damages

Your attorney will systematically value the cost of each of your recoverable damages. This includes non-economic damages like pain and suffering.

Negotiating a Settlement

Once your attorney knows the value of your damages, they will negotiate a settlement with insurance companies. They may seek compensation from both your insurers and the insurance company for at-fault parties.

Filing a Lawsuit, If You Decide To

As settlement offers arrive, your lawyer will evaluate them with you. An acceptable settlement must cover both your current and future damages.

If your lawyer leads multiple rounds of negotiations without receiving an acceptable settlement, you two will discuss filing suit.

Going to Trial, If You Decide To

After you file a lawsuit, your attorney can still secure a settlement if liable parties negotiate in good faith. If not, your lawyer may then:

  • Complete the discovery process
  • Develop a strategy for your trial
  • Question witnesses
  • Present evidence
  • Make closing arguments

A jury may then award you fair compensation, making right insurance companies’ failure to pay what you owe.

Your Claim or Lawsuit May Include These Losses (or Damages)

Your damages are the focus of your claim or lawsuit, and they may include:

  • The cost of repairing or replacing your motorcycle
  • The cost of temporary transportation
  • Pain and suffering
  • Lost income
  • Diminished earning power
  • Medical expenses

If you have other damages, trust your attorney to value them and seek fair compensation from liable parties.

Do Not Wait to Hire Your Motorcycle Accident Lawyer

The claims process may already be underway, and you face a strict deadline if you need to file a lawsuit. Don’t wait to find a capable personal injury lawyer serving your area and hire them to fight for you. Consultations are free, so schedule yours with a local law firm now.

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David Abels

Partner

David Abels has carved a niche for himself in the personal injury law sector, dedicating a substantial part of his career since 1997 to representing victims of various accidents. With a law practice that spans over two decades, his expertise has been consistently recognized within the legal community.

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