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The most important “don’t” occurs after you leave the scene of the accident. Don’t call your insurance company right away. Many accident victims don’t know their rights as motorcyclists and feel compelled to report immediately for fear of having their coverage dropped and premiums raised.
Keep in mind that the insurance company loses money every time they pay a claim. They’ll look for ways to minimize payment to you, or may try to get out of paying your claim at all. Avoid giving an official statement to your agent and signing any insurance company forms. In fact, speaking to the insurance company is the last step involved in making an accident claim.
In some cases, you will not be the one making the call to them. Instead, you should focus on these four actions to make the most of your accident claim.
Even if you don’t get the other party’s name and insurance information, make a police report as soon as possible. Also, don’t brush off an accident because there is minimal damage to you or your motorcycle.
First, you don’t know the other party’s intention is really to “let it go” or to use your kindness against you. Second, like bodily injury, the damages to your bike could show up days to weeks later.
Injuries can manifest hours or days later, so even if you don’t need an ambulance at the scene doesn’t mean you’re not injured.
Mechanical damages can show up days or weeks later. Take your bike to a motorcycle repair shop and have the body, engine, brakes, and other components checked.
Get a statement from your doctor if you need to be off from work due to injuries or to seek treatment or therapy for accident-related injuries. Also get a statement from your employer with your position and income, and documenting time that you’ve taken off.
Call an injury attorney who has experience settling and litigating motorcycle accident claims. Whether you end up making a claim through your insurance company or against the other party and their insurer, let your motorcycle accident attorney from places like The Jaklitsch Law Group make the first call to the insurance companies, determine the value of your motorcycle accident claim, and provide the proper documentation to support your claim.