Protecting your legal rights after a motorcycle accident can be difficult. Motorcyclists face an unfair stigma of being reckless. Insurance companies capitalize on this misconception, invariably trying to place the blame for collisions on the rider.
In reality, most motorcycle riders are safe, and most ride well within their limits. In fact, in most cases, it is negligent drivers who are to blame for serious motorcycle accidents.
So, while you should expect to face challenges, you should not give up hope. With a diligent approach and experienced legal representation, you can collect the financial compensation you deserve. Contact O’Connor & Partners, PLLC at (845) 303-8777 for immediate assistance, or keep reading for tips on how you can build your case.
10 Steps to Take After a Motorcycle Accident in New York
1. See a Doctor
When you are involved in a serious motorcycle accident, seeking medical attention needs to be your first priority. Go to the emergency room if necessary, see a doctor you trust if you can, and make sure you explain what happened with as much detail as possible.
Motorcycle accidents can result in internal injuries that do not have immediate outward symptoms. So, you need to make sure your doctor has the information he or she needs to provide a comprehensive diagnosis.
2. Make Sure You Understand Your Doctor’s Advice
Before you leave your doctor’s office, make sure you know your next steps. If you are already home and you are not sure when (or if) you have another appointment, or if you cannot recall your doctor’s recommendations regarding treatment and recovery, do not hesitate to call.
At this point, you should be doing everything you can to make sure you recover as quickly and fully as possible. If you experience any symptoms that worry you, contact your doctor as soon as possible or call 911 if you believe it’s an emergency.
3. Take Stock of the Evidence in Your Possession
Were you able to collect the driver’s insurance information and take photos at the scene of the accident? Do you still have your damaged riding gear? These and other items or information may be key evidence in your case, and you should make sure you keep it in a safe place until you can give it to your attorney.
4. Locate Your Motorcycle Insurance Policy
Now is also a good time to locate your motorcycle insurance policy. You can review your policy yourself if you wish, but, in any case, you will need to give a copy to your attorney so that he or she can determine what coverage you have available.
5. Take Detailed Notes
How much do you remember about the accident? Even if your answer is “Not much,” you should still take the time to write down as many details as you can remember.
For many people, the process of taking notes will trigger additional memories. From the weather conditions to road signs to what you were doing at the time of the crash (i.e., turning, accelerating, braking, or keeping pace with traffic), all of the details are potentially relevant to your claim for financial compensation.
6. Prepare a List of Questions
In addition to taking notes about everything you can remember, you should also prepare a list of questions you want to ask your attorney. When it comes to dealing with the aftermath of a motorcycle accident, there truly are no “dumb” questions.
You should feel comfortable asking any questions you have about aspects of the case such as:
- Dealing with the insurance companies
- Steps you need to take
- Mistakes you need to avoid
- The attorney’s experience in motorcycle accident cases
- Legal fees and your anticipated financial recovery
The lawyer should be happy to field any and all of these questions. After all, the consultation is their time not only to learn about your case but to assess your needs and how the firm can help.
7. Schedule a Free Initial Consultation with a Lawyer
After being injured in a motorcycle accident, it is important that you speak with a lawyer as soon as possible. If you have been seriously injured, you could be entitled to a significant financial recovery. But, for the reasons we discussed above, you will need experienced legal representation in order to recover the compensation you deserve.
At O’Connor & Partners, PLLC, our attorneys are available 24/7, and we can come to you if you are unable to travel to our offices in Kingston, Newburgh, or Poughkeepsie. Contact us today.
8. Decide If the Lawyer Is Right for You
When your initial consultation ends, you will need to decide if you are ready to move forward, or if you think you may want to speak with another attorney. Ultimately, it is up to you.
Your choice of legal representation is extremely important. So, you want to make sure you feel confident in the attorney you choose.
9. Be Prepared to Remain Actively Involved in Your Case
Once you hire a lawyer to represent you, you will still need to remain actively involved in your case. It is important not to have the expectation that your attorney will simply call with a settlement offer. Your attorney will need you to provide information from time to time, and he or she may ask you to see another doctor or meet with a specialist.
In order to keep your case moving forward, you will need to do your part as well.
10. Be Prepared for the Process to Take Time
Finally, it is important to understand that securing just compensation after a motorcycle accident takes time. Your attorney will need to gather the evidence needed to prove your case, and he or she will need to negotiate with the insurance companies. If the insurance companies will not offer a settlement that meets your needs, your attorney may need to take your case to trial.
During your initial consultation, your attorney should help you set reasonable expectations. As your case progresses, he or she should keep you informed so that you know when you may be able to expect a resolution.
Schedule a Free Motorcycle Accident Consultation at O’Connor & Partners, PLLC
Were you seriously injured in a motorcycle accident in the Hudson Valley? If so, we encourage you to schedule a free initial consultation with one of our experienced New York motorcycle accident attorneys.
To speak with an attorney about your case as soon as possible, call O’Connor & Partners, PLLC at (845) 303-8777 or inquire online today. Our lawyers serve clients in Kingston, Poughkeepsie, Newburgh, and nearby areas of New York.